BY BOB HOLT
Some lucky lottery player may not have to wait for Christmas to receive presents, because they will nearly be able to bankroll Santa Claus’s trip around the world with their winnings.
The 12th largest jackpot in U.S. lottery history will be there for the taking in the Powerball drawing of Saturday, November 24. The estimated jackpot for the game is now $325 million, with a cash option value of $212.8 million.
No tickets won Powerball’s $250 million jackpot on Wednesday, marking the 14th consecutive game without a grand prize winner, according to Lottery Post. Powerball’s web site reported that the winning numbers for the game of Wednesday, November 21 were 8, 18, 24, 30, and 39, and the Powerball number was 26.
Three tickets matched the first five numbers without getting the Powerball to earn one million, with one of them using the Power Play option to double their winnings to $2 million. None of those winners were from New Jersey.
This is the third time this year that the Powerball jackpot has cleared $300 million for the first time in lottery history. Philly.com reports that the largest lottery jackpot of all time was this past March’s Mega Millions prize of $656 million to three tickets, with a $471 million lump sum payout
Second all time was on March 6, 2007, when two Mega Millions tickets split a $390 million jackpot, with one of those winners coming from New Jersey. Two Mega Millions tickets divided a $380 million prize in January 2011 for third place.
Powerball’s top winner came in fourth overall when a $365 million jackpot was taken by a single winner in February 2006.
With all of the “fiscal cliff” talk we’ve heard recently, if this current drawing keeps going and rolls over into next year, the eventual winner might be able to afford to pay off the national debt.