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'It’s incredibly exciting': Gold ball jackpot hits record high

Wednesday was a huge day for retailers in Moncton ahead of the Lotto 6/49 gold ball jackpot.

For the first time in Lotto 6/49 history, a gold ball is guaranteed to be drawn Wednesday evening meaning one lucky Canadian will win a jackpot of $68 million, an all-time high.

According to the Atlantic Lottery Corporation, no white balls remain which means the gold ball is guaranteed to be drawn.

That means big business at gas stations and convenience stores.

Ayer Convenience employee Brittany Curtis said Wednesday was a busy day.

“Every second customer is coming in and buying tickets, and it's not just one ticket it's about five or ten at a time,” said Curtis.

It was a similar story at the Race Trac gas bar in the city’s north end.

“I had one fellow yesterday buy $100 worth of 6/49 only. He didn't want any extras. Yeah, it's going to be a busy day. No doubt,” said Wilson.

Wilson’s customer Keith Fournier explained why he picked up a ticket.

“Ah, you never know. I could be the winner and retire. Take my wife to the Philippines and grow old over there,” said Fournier.

There are plenty of big dreamers all around the city, but some are drawn to purchasing a ticket because of the state of the economy.

“Well that too, you know that would help,” said Roger Saulnier outside Ayr Convenience. “You know right now inflation is getting very high.”

Donald Arsenault knows the chances of winning are slim, but he had a good sense of humour about it.

“I’m buying a ticket because I’m poor,” laughed Arsenault. “I'm retired. I'm on a fixed income and I'm just living month to month. So basically I want to try and make a pot so I don't have to worry about paying my bills.”

Atlantic Lottery Corporation spokesperson Lindsay Meekins said there's a definite buzz when there’s a record jackpot and that translates to a big spike in ticket sales.

“It’s incredibly exciting for us and our players when jackpots reach this level. Especially now that it is record breaking,” said Meekins.

Meekins acknowledged the high cost of living could be at least part of the reason behind that boost.

“So many of our players are long term regular players,” said Meekins. “I think that with the way the economy is today jackpots like this sometimes bring out people who aren't regular players, so they can have that opportunity to dream big too even if it's only once in a while when the jackpots reach this level.”

A gold ball jackpot worth $64 million was won by someone in Gloucester County, New Brunswick back in April.

It's the largest lottery prize ever won in Atlantic Canada, but as of yet no one has come forward to claim it.

Meekins is encouraging players to check any tickets they may not have looked at yet.

“It's very rare that large prizes such as this go unclaimed,” said Meekins. “It isn't unusual for people to wait to come forward to claim. People wait for many different reasons.”

That lucky winner or winners will have one full year to come forward to claim their fortune.

For more New Brunswick news visit our dedicated provincial page. Top Stories

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