By TERESA CRAWFORD
CHICAGO (AP) — After nearly three months of lottery losing, will someone break the trend Tuesday night and win a $1.1 billion Mega Millions jackpot?
Regardless of how long it takes, the odds of winning the top lottery prize don’t change, and they’re formidable at 1 in 302.6 million. But someone will eventually match all six numbers and win the jackpot, which now ranks as the fifth-largest in U.S. history.
The $1.1 billion prize is for a winner who chooses to be paid through an annuity with 30 payments over 29 years. Winners usually prefer cash, which for Tuesday night’s drawing would be an estimated $568.7 million.
Customers at Lucky Mart on Chicago’s South Side on Tuesday were hoping they picked a winner.
Toni Woods, a retired city worker, said that if she won, the first thing she would do was give her church 10%.
After that, Woods, 73, said, “I’ve got a list of people that need things, my family members, I would take care of them.” Then she’d go on a vacation.
Retired Chicago firefighter Kirby Collins, 58, said he would use winnings to “travel, share with my friends and family, help out, you know, needy people. You know, just do the right thing with it. I don’t want to just blow it.”
The drawing is set for 11 p.m. EST Tuesday but it usually takes a couple hours before it’s clear if there is a winner.
Mega Millions is played in 45 states as well as Washington, D.C., and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
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