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Powerball climbs to $600 million

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Posted at 10:28 AM, May 16, 2013
and last updated 2013-05-17 14:49:49-04

The estimated jackpot for Saturday night's Powerball drawing has been increased to $600 million.

Virginia Lottery officials expect to sell more than 4.7 million Powerball tickets in the Commonwealth on Saturday alone. If one ticket matches all six numbers in Saturday’s drawing, the winner will have a choice: either take the full $600 million jackpot in 30 annual payments or choose a one-time cash option of approximately $376.9 million before taxes.

Paula Otto, Executive Director of the Virginia Lottery, urges those in the Commonwealth to play responsibly.

"Saturday's Powerball drawing is an exciting time for players across the state. As with any Powerball jackpot, players should remember that the odds of winning are 1 in 175 million, and those odds remain the same regardless of how many tickets are purchased."

It's the second-highest Powerball ever and a lottery spokesperson says it could get even higher before the big drawing depending on how many more people buy tickets.

More than 64,000 tickets in Virginia won prizes ranging from $4 to $1 million in the Wednesday, May 15 drawing. The $1 million-winning ticket was bought at Wilco Food Mart, 204 Roanoke Street in Christiansburg. The winner has not yet claimed his or her prize.

Two Virginia tickets each won $10,000 in Wednesday’s drawing. Those tickets were bought in Alexandria and Manassas.

Since the beginning of the year, Virginians have won five $1 million Powerball prizes, a $2 million prize and a $217 million Powerball jackpot.

Powerball drawings are held at 10:59 p.m. Wednesdays and Saturdays. Powerball drawings are broadcast on TV stations across Virginia and live on http://www.valottery.com. For more information on Powerball, visit http://www.powerball.com.