Massachusetts Woman Wins $758.7 Million Powerball Jackpot

Powerball Lottery Jackpot

The $758.7 million jackpot was the second-largest in Powerball history.

The numbers for the August 23 Powerball Lottery drawing are 06-07-16-23-26, while the Powerball number is 04. The Powerplay multiplier this time was 4x.

The winner of the Powerball Lottery drawing for August 23 was Mavis Wanczyk, a 53-year old resident of Chicopee, Massachusetts. Mrs. Wanczyk won $758.7 million in the drawing, which was the second-most ever for a Powerball lotto.

Mavis Wanczyk of Chicopee, Massachusetts

The Massachusetts State Lottery announced Wanczyk in a press conference on Thursday. She bought her Powerball ticket at the Pride Station and Store in Chicopee, which is located about 90 miles west of Boston. At the press conference, Mavis Wanczyk said, “It’s just a pipe dream I’ve always had. It’s just a chance I had to take.”

Wanczyk works at the Chicopee Medical Center, though she joked that she called into work and probably would not be going into work anytime soon. Asked about her surprise at winning such a big jackpot, Wanczyk said, “I couldn’t drive anywhere. I couldn’t do anything.”

Second-Largest Powerball Jackpot Ever

Americans awaited the drawing for the second-largest jackpot in Powerball history last night. The advertised payout for the Wednesday, August 23 drawing was announced as an estimated $700 million, but player enthusiasm led to a payout much higher.

The lump sum payout was expected to be around $444.3 million. In truth, the lump sum cash value for last night’s Powerball drawing was “only” $485 million or so, after taxes. That should be more than enough to satisfy any jackpot winner.

Knowledgeable gamblers will point out that tonight’s drawing is still not a positive expectation game, because the actual jackpot is lower than the amount of money one would spend to have an even-money chance of winning. Though the odds of winning a Powerball drawing is something in the range of 292 million-to-1, players have to spend $2 to qualify for the big jackpot, so the break-even point would be a $584 million actual payout.

New Jersey Powerball Lottery Tickets

That does nothing to quell the enthusiasm players are showing. Carole Hedinger, executive director of the New Jersey Lottery, said the public excitement was high for the big jackpot. Instead of hyping the event, though, the executive director warned players about problem gambling issues — and her lottery organization’s effort to foster responsible gaming.

Hedinger said, “The excitement and public awareness created by the increased jackpot is a good time to remind players to play responsibly.”

“Yearlong, the New Jersey Lottery promotes responsible play through its cooperation with the Council on Compulsive Gambling of NJ and by promoting the helpline 1-800-GAMBLER phone number on all Lottery marketing and advertising material. I will once again remind players to bet with their heads and not over it.”

How to Win the Powerball

Each Powerball drawing includes 5 balls drawn from the the numbers 1 through 69. The Powerball number is the sixth number drawn, but it is from a pull of separate numbers 1 through 26. To win the main jackpot, players have to hit on all 6 numbers.

Powerball Rules

A basic Powerball ticket costs $2, which qualifies a person for the jackpot. Those who want to bet on the Powerplay can spend another dollar ($3 overall). When playing the Power Play option, gamblers need to collect 5 of the 6 lottery numbers (including the Powerball number) to win $1,000,000 or more. A separate multiplier determines how many millions one might win with the Powerplay option.

Players have the option to pick a lump sum payout or an annuity. The annuity is 30 different payouts, including one immediate payout and an annual payment for the next 29 years. The annuity involves the entire announced payout, minus taxes.

Most players choose the lump sum payout, which is considerably less — but all paid up-front. The lump sum supposes a person places their money in an account and collects interest, so it pays out less. In either case, taxes are taken out before payment is made, so lottery bettors need not concern themselves with delinquent taxes.

Where Is Powerball Played

Powerball tickets are sold in 44 US states, Washington DC, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands. Only the states of Utah, Hawaii, Alaska, Nevada, Mississippi, and Alabama do not allow the sale of Powerball lotto tickets.

Ironically, the list of states which ban Powerball consists some of the most gambling-friendly states, as well as those with the most hostility to gambling. One seeks to protect the players, while the other seeks to protect local gambling operators.

Non-Jackpot Winnings from Powerball Drawings

Players who didn’t win the big jackpot should take a second look at their tickets. 9,397,723 other lotto players won non-jackpot prizes from the drawing. The total non-jackpot prize pool was $134,981,575.

California along had 1,172,477 winners. Other large states like Texas should have a lot of winners, too. Powerball officials said that Texans spent the most per capita on the Powerball this time around, with over $60,000 spent each minute.