Big prizes still available as Big Money tickets close to selling out


MANCHESTER, N.H. —A New Hampshire scratch-ticket game that's almost sold out still may have some big prizes available, lottery officials said Friday.

The New Hampshire Lottery said that only about 5 percent of the $5 Big Money tickets are left, but there are still three $100,000 tickets that haven't been claimed.

"With 95 percent sold, usually there's one top prize still remaining," said Kelley Jaye-Cleland of the New Hampshire Lottery. "We still have three top prizes remaining, which is highly unusual."

There are also 19 winning tickets worth $1,000 waiting to be claimed.

"We know that there are about 35,000 tickets still remaining at retailers where people may have the opportunity to still buy them, so those three top prizes could be there," Jaye-Cleland said. "They also still could have been returned to the warehouse and now are in the process of destruction, so we just don't know."

Because there are so few tickets left, not all stores still have them in stock. One that did earlier Friday was 777 Express in Manchester. Owner Jay Farhat sold the first $100,000 Big Money ticket in June, joining a long list of winning tickets sold there.

"Everybody says it's a lucky store," Farhat said. "I believe in a lucky person. You have to be in the right time, right place."

Shopper Matt Murphy said he was dreaming of a tropical vacation as he scratched his ticket. Unfortunately for him, he came up empty.

"I probably would've went to Costa Rica," he said. "Where else are you going to go?"

As News 9 was reporting this story Friday evening, 777 Express sold out of the Big Money tickets.