Powerball jackpot soars to $600 million
Powerball jackpot soars to $600 million

Long Islanders now have 600 million reasons to test their luck Saturday and join in on the Powerball craze.

The popular lottery game has soared to $600 million this week as lottery hopefuls descended on stores across the country looking for that one lucky ticket in advance of Saturday’s much-anticipated drawing.

The jackpot is now the largest ever in the game’s history, surpassing the previous record of $587 million in Nov. 2012.

Sales in recent days have soared. Wednesday’s drawing came and went with nobody claiming the $360 million jackpot and by Thursday morning the jackpot had climbed to $475 million. By that afternoon, it had already reached $500 million and was well on its way to record-breaking territory.

Powerball has gained in popularity recently, partly due to the $1 million second place prize.

Two Long Island stores—one in Southampton and the other in Massapequa—both sold the second place prize during Wednesday’s drawing, which is awarded to ticket buyers who match the first five winning numbers.

The cash payout for Saturday night’s drawing is $376.9 million, according to Powerball’s website.

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Rashed Mian has been covering local news for the Long Island Press since 2011. He graduated from Hofstra University in 2010 where he studied print journalism. Rashed, the staff's multimedia reporter, covers daily news for the web, shoots/edits feature videos and writes about civil liberties. He loves Afghan food and sports. Rashed is also a caffeine freak. Email: [email protected] Twitter: rashedmian