North Carolina Residents Rush to Buy Ticket for $435m Powerball Drawing

Powerball mania swept the nation Saturday night as players had a chance to win the 10th largest lottery prize in U.S. history.

The drawing was for an estimated $435 million.

And North Carolina residents weren’t excluded from Powerball fever.

The Eagle Express Convenience Store in Knightdale had a busy night as they sold hundreds of tickets to lottery players.

And owners of the store said they saw people from all walks of life playing, hoping to strike it rich.

Sondra Urgelles said she typically doesn’t play the Powerball, but this jackpot has her making an exception.

“I only (play) when it’s a certain amount,” she said. “When it gets to three digits. Then I’m like, ‘ok, as long as it’s not the Lord’s money I’m gone play.'”

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While some people said they’d buy a house with their winnings, other players like Larry Howell have other ideas.

“I probably would invest,” he said. “I think, and then I’d go splurge a little bit.”

“First, I’d give it to the Lord,” Urgelles said. “I’d pay off my mom and dad’s house. Put some away for my kid’s college.”

For some customers, the numbers chosen represent anniversaries, birthdays, and other special dates.

It was an opportunity to try their luck and strike it big, even though the odds of winning were small and stacked against them: A one in 292.2 million chance.

However, managers at the store said that didn’t stop customers from buying.

“I had someone get like 40 tickets,” Melissa Caito said. “I’ve had someone get 25 tickets. We just keep them rolling.”

Eagle Express Convenience Store said if someone won the jackpot at their store, they would throw a big party.

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