USA TODAY is now using Facebook Comments on our stories and blog posts to provide an enhanced user experience. They'll split a world record $640 million jackpot worth a lump sum of about $462 million after taxes. Mike Lang, spokesman for the Illinois Lottery, said his state's winning ticket was sold in the small town of Red Bud, near St.
Maryland Lottery officials said another winning ticket was sold at a 7-Eleven outlet in Baltimore County. The $1 shot at mega-wealth had been the talk of TV, social media sites, office water coolers and dreamy high-rollers for the past week, electrifying ticket sales with a frenzy that amped up leading to Friday's drawing.The pot had grown nearly $300 million since Tuesday's Mega Millions drawing failed to draw a top prize winner for the 18th consecutive time since Jan.


Some, such as Zulodius Morgan, waited in line for three hours to purchase tickets at the store, which has a reputation for being lucky for lottery players. Some of the folks buying tickets at the newsstands down 1st Avenue in New York City used numbers that were printed on Chinese fortune cookies. Others used birth dates, while some went to different retailers on the same block.Idaho typically sells 200,000 to 250,000 tickets. Thursday, she received a text message from her twin sister in Jackson, Miss., with a list of numbers they should play.
One of his customers was Patrice Gordon, a first-time Mega Millions buyer, who bought three tickets each for herself and her friend, Dionne Knight.Knight, 43, says the Mega Millions jackpot has been the topic of non-stop talk at the bar she owns, The New Place.


Just the prospect of the mammoth payout has been good for the city, she says, which in recent years has weathered devastating floods, oil spills and, more recently, a series of sanctions on their beloved NFL team, the New Orleans Saints."It's well-needed here," Knight says.
Demand for Mega Millions tickets boosted overall retail sales at many convenience stores."It's an amazing opportunity to introduce yourself to new customers," says Jeff Lenard, spokesman for the National Association of Convenience Stores.



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