Illinois Lottery

Gas station in tiny Illinois town sells winning $3M scratch-off lotto ticket

Someone in the small town of Woodhull, Illinois just won $3 million from a scratch-off Instant lotto ticket, the Illinois Lottery said.

The lucky ticket, a "200X Payout" Instant lottery ticket, was sold at a BP gas station at 111 NW 5th Street in Woodhull, about 30 miles southeast of Moline, and 65 northwest of Peoria, according to a release.

“It’s so surprising to me that our local, little gas station sold a ticket that won such a big prize," BP store manager Jennifer Damer said in the release.

“We are the go-to stop for many townfolk, including farmers who live nearby and truck drivers passing through,” Damer's statement said.

According to the 2010 U.S. Census, Woodhull, in western Illinois, has a population for 811 people. According to Damer, the winner has not yet been identified.

"“Lately, all anyone can talk about is the $3 million winning lottery ticket," Damer said in the release. "Everyone in our tiny town is trying to figure out who the lucky winner is.”

For selling the winning ticket, the gas station will receive a one percent bonus of the prize amount, which amounts to $30,000.

“Some of the bonus will be used for improvements to our store," BP owner Phillip Edat said in the release. "But more importantly, I plan to share the bonus with my seven loyal and dedicated employees."

More than 50 million winning Instant Lotto tickets have been sold in 2023 in Illinois, the release said. Recently, that includes a number of big winners in other Chicago suburbs, including a $3 million ticket sold in Mount Prospect, $400,000 ticket sold in Wood Dale, a $2 million ticket sold in Morris and another $3 million ticket, sold in Carpentersville.

Earlier this year, an NBC 5 Investigates report revealed that the Illinois Lottery continued to sell and promote many Instant Games even after the top prizes had been claimed. A spokesperson for the lottery told NBC Chicago that although retailers are notified once a ticket no longer has a top prize, the process can be time consuming.

"As the process involves physically removing hundreds of thousands to millions of tickets from our stores for a particular game, that process can take up to 1 to 3 months to complete," the spokesperson said. "We will continue to look for ways to make this process even better for our players and retailers.”

According to lottery officials, there are more than 50 different Illinois Lottery Instant Ticket games at over 7,000 retail locations across Illinois.

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