Powerball Jackpot: Powerball jackpot swells to $350M
The jackpot for Saturday’s drawing reached $270 million with a cash value of $175.8 million if taken as a lump sum, lottery officials said. It now stands at $350 million, or a $222.8 million cash value payment if taken immediately instead of a 29-year annuity.
Tickets for each game cost $2 and there’s a 1 in 175.2 million chance that any ticket will win the grand prize. The overall odds of winning any prize, including $4 for selecting only the Powerball, are 1 in 31.85, Powerball officials say.
A $50 million jackpot was awarded to one lucky player on March 30, but the last major Powerball winner was Pedro Quezada, a 44-year-old New Jersey man who won $338 million on March 23. It marked the fourth-largest jackpot in Powerball history.
Quezada, an immigrant from the Dominican Republic, told reporters in Spanish at the time that he was "very happy" and intended to help his family.
His wife, Ines Sanchez, told The Record in Bergen County that Quezada called her with the news two days after the life-changing drawing.
"I still can't believe it," she told the newspaper. "We never expected it, but thank God."
Prior to Quezada’s winning, no one had won the Powerball jackpot since early February, when Dave Honeywell in Virginia bought the winning ticket and elected a cash lump sum for a $217 million jackpot.
The largest Powerball jackpot of all time happened in November, when a $587.5 million prize was split by one couple in Missouri and another man in Arizona. Nebraska, meanwhile, still holds the record for the largest Powerball jackpot won on a single ticket — $365 million — by eight workers at a Lincoln meatpacking plant in February 2006.
Powerball is played in 42 states, Washington, D.C., and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Drawings are held every Wednesday and Saturday night at 10:59 p.m. Eastern Time in Florida. Five white balls are drawn from a drum of 59 before one red ball — the Powerball — is selected from a drum of 35 balls.