Lines form in Delta for Powerball punch

Published 12:00 am Monday, September 16, 2002

Christina Jones waits for the next customer to drive through the Louisiana Lottery Powerball ticket window at The World in Delta Saturday. Fran Jenkins, an employee with The World, said traffic had been steady as customers lined up for a chance at the Powerball worth $100 million. (The Vicksburg Post/Melanie Duncan)

[09/15/02]More than 58,000 Powerball tickets were sold in Delta, La., Saturday night as gamblers took a shot at winning the multistate $100 million Powerball lottery.

Tommy Cantin, owner of The World, a lounge on U.S. 80 in Delta, said he sold 5,000 tickets Saturday and he expected the volume to pick up dramatically for Wednesday’s drawing if no winner came forward after Saturday night.

“A 100 million isn’t enough money to bring people out, but if no winner is found, the line will pick up for Wednesday night, people here have too much money. They don’t come out until the jackpot reaches $150 million,” he said.

Hattie Vines, manager at Interstate Chevron in Delta, said her store sold 52,000 tickets Saturday.

“If someone doesn’t hit Saturday night, God help us Wednesday night,” she said.

The Powerball is played in 20 states, and numbers are drawn twice weekly.

The numbers 9,14, 26, 31, 40 and Powerball 29 were drawn just after 10 Saturday night, but it could be days before a winner, if there is one, comes forward.

Vines said a lot of people who buy tickets at her store are from Mississippi.

“People come in here from Jackson, Hattiesburg and we have a lot of runners from Mississippi,” Vines said. “A runner is someone who’ll pick up tickets for everyone they know, usually about 1,500 tickets at a time.”

Vines said there is no limit to the number of $1 tickets one person is allowed to purchase.

“If I win I’m gonna build a little house, but I’m not gonna win,” said Joe Beverly, who drove from Jackson to buy 30 tickets in Delta. “I just pray one day I finally do win.”

Dwanna Jennings of Pearl said she was driving through Louisiana and decided to stop and get some tickets.

“I’m not an everyday player, just once in a while,” said Jennings, who bought two Powerball tickets. “If I win, it’ll be a miracle,” she said.

Another Jackson resident, Dexter Robinson, said: “I’ve had some luck, but not the luck I want” as he held up the 15 tickets he bought Saturday evening.

The jackpot for the Powerball game jumped to $100 million after no winning ticket was sold for Wednesday night’s $87 million drawing.

Separately, Louisiana Lotto’s top prize went from $1 million to an estimated $1.05 million. The numbers drawn Saturday night for Louisiana Lotto were 1, 6, 17, 21, 23 and 35.