They say it’s okay to dream and lately dreams have come true in the Golden State, just ask the 125 new millionaires who won the Mega Millions lottery.
And since last year a large sum has been at stake, since no one has hit the jackpot and now the value that has grown to $785 million ($395 million in cash).
The jackpot is there after no ticket matched all six numbers drawn on Friday night: white balls 1, 3, 6, 44 and 51, plus gold Mega Ball 7.
On only three previous occasions has the Mega Millions jackpot exceeded $700 million, and all three times those jackpots continued to exceed $1 billion. One was in January, just two years ago, when the $1.05 billion Michigan jackpot was finally won on January 22, 2021.
The game’s first $1 billion jackpot came on October 23, 2018, when a South Carolina winner took home a $1.537 million prize. That remains the record Mega Millions jackpot, though a third run of $1 billion came close last summer, when a ticket from Illinois won $1.337 million on July 29.
While the jackpot is still elusive, there have been plenty of winning tickets at all other prize levels. In the December 30 drawing alone, there were 2,776,599 winning tickets, with prizes ranging from $2 to $1 million. One ticket, sold in Ohio, matched all five white balls to win the game’s $1 million second-tier prize. Nationwide, 82 tickets matched four white balls plus the Mega Ball to win the third-tier prize, a $10,000 value.
The lottery offers millions of dollars in prizes.
In the 22 drawings since the jackpot was last won on October 14, there have been more than 19.8 million winning tickets across all prize levels, including 41 with a value of $1 million or more, won in 18 different states from coast to coast: Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Illinois, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Mississippi, Missouri, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Texas, Virginia, and West Virginia.
Other jackpot wins this year were in California for $426 million on January 28, New York for $128 million on March 8 and Minnesota, which grabbed its first Mega Millions jackpot on April 12 for $110 million.
These are the biggest Mega Millions prizes to date:
- $1,537 million 10-23-2018 1-SC
- $1,337 million 07-29-2022 1-IL
- $1,050 million 01-22-2021 1-MI
- $785 million (est.) 03-01-2023 ???
- $656 million 2012-30-03 3-IL, KS, MD
- $648 million 12-17-2013 2-CA, GA
- $543 million 07-24-2018 1-CA
- $536 million 07-08-2016 1-IN
- $533 million 03/30/2018 1-NJ
- $522 million 07/06/2019 1-CA