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Locals try their luck as lottery jackpots hit historic highs

Posted at 4:28 PM, Jan 05, 2018
and last updated 2018-01-05 17:37:17-05

The Mega Millions and Powerball jackpots now total more than $950 million combined. 

The Powerball jackpot sits at $550 million ahead of the next drawing Saturday night. The winner would take home a one-time, cash option of $347.9 million before taxes, should he or she choose a lump sum payment instead of receiving the prize in installments. 

The Mega Millions grand prize is $418 million, with a cash value of $261 million before taxes. The Mega Millions drawing is Friday night. 

At Skyline Petroleum at 13th & Grange, customers filed in bright and early Friday morning to purchase tickets to both lotteries. 

"I got five tickets for each one," said Tom Pinter. 

"I only play a few times a year, when (the jackpot) gets big," Pinter also said. 

The odds of winning the Mega Millions jackpot tonight are 1 in more than 302.5 million. 

The Powerball odds on Saturday night are a little better: 1 in more than 292 million.

Still, customers like Asad Naji said it was worth it to try their luck. 

He said he only bought one ticket for each drawing. 

"I believe in luck, you know?" Naji said. "If you get lucky, you get lucky. You don't have to spend a lot of money." 

The current stretch of time is the first one in which both multi-state lottery grand prizes have reached more than $400 million. 

Saturday's Powerball jackpot is the eighth largest lottery prize ever. The Mega Millions jackpot up for grabs tonight is the 16th largest prize of all time.