People across the nation are hoping the odds are in their favor when it comes to winning the Mega Millions lottery, and many Central New Yorkers are headed to the nearest store to get in on the action.
The Mega Millions jackpot is up to a record high of $1.6 billion, and the next drawing will be at 11 p.m. Tuesday.
If one person wins the entire jackpot, after taxes are withheld, the winner could still afford to send more than 1,500 students to Harvard University. Or, they could send more than 2,000 of their friends to outer space. If they like privacy, they could buy their own private island.
Here in CNY, many people are saying they’ll be on the charitable side if they win.
"Winning ticket in my hand and I cannot wait to win to help people in this community, as well as my family, and probably start some community services for people here,” said one local ticket buyer.
Another said that if he won, he’d spend the money on "agencies that my mother supported when she was alive, so I would probably give to them, too, like St. Jude's, Omaha's School for Children she always donated to them. So I would probably give to them too, in her name.”
"Well, first I would buy my mom a whole new house and set up my sister with a college fund,” said another woman who purchased a ticket.
Such a high jackpot number also draws in some extra customers for local businesses.
"It honestly brings in a lot of people,” said Cody Lamach, a cigar specialist at Smokers Choice. “Like today … every single sale I've had has literally had a Mega Millions ticket attached to it. I kid you not, like it's amazing."
If you haven’t gotten your ticket yet, you have until 10:45 p.m. Tuesday to purchase it.