BOISE, Idaho – With the Powerball jackpot at $350 million for Wednesday night and the Mega Millions jackpot for Tuesday night at $170 million for a combined $520 million in available jackpot prizes, the Idaho Lottery is urging players who participate this week to play responsibly. While dueling jackpots, both games in excess of nine figures simultaneously, has occurred four previous times in the last three-and-a-half years, their combined big jackpot amounts had never exceeded the $500 million mark before this week.
“Having two big jackpots at the same time for over half-a-billion dollars is bringing a lot of excitement right now to the Gem State,” said Idaho Lottery Director Jeff Anderson. “We remind everyone who plays this week to play within their means. It does only take one ticket to win. Play what you can afford, don’t go overboard.”
The Idaho Lottery has seen a 35% increase in combined sales of both games over the past week.
“We do see more people join office pools and buy tickets in groups when the jackpots start to grow,” added Anderson.
In the past 14 months, both Mega Millions and Powerball have seen individual record jackpot amounts for their respective games, but have not grown to nine-figures simultaneously. The previous record for both games under these circumstances was in late March 2011 when their combined total was $448 million.
At $350 million, this is the third largest Powerball jackpot in the game’s history. Powerball tickets can be purchased until 7:55 p.m. MT on Wednesday night. Mega Millions tickets are available for purchase until 7:55 p.m. MT on Tuesday night.
Adding to the mix, Hot Lotto Sizzler is approaching its first draw on Wednesday night with new game improvements. Beginning on Wednesday, any player who wins the Hot Lotto Sizzler jackpot will receive the entire jackpot amount in cash and have their jackpot withholding taxes paid by the Lottery. The current Hot Lotto jackpot is $6.16 million.