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Mega Millions Increases Harrison Lottery Sales

HARRISON, N.Y. -- A $363 million Mega Millions jackpot has Harrisonites buying more lottery tickets than usual, local businesses say.

“Everyone is coming here from kids who just turned 18 to people who have been buying lottery tickets for years,” said Sam Lorenzo, an employee of the Shell gas station on Halstead Avenue. “You have to be in it to win it.”

Lorenzo said that more people have been coming into the store connected to the gas station for the sole purpose of buying lottery tickets. Big Top employee Arton Mirakaj said that the business is getting 10 times more people buying lottery tickets than a normal jackpot does. Mirakaj said that a lot of people buying lottery tickets for the $363 million jackpot do not normally buy tickets if the jackpot is around $50 million but will come out in droves once the jackpot adds another zero to the end of it.

“A lot of people will say that a lower jackpot is not enticing enough to buy a ticket,” Mirakaj said. “It’s still a lot of money though with the smaller jackpots. People who also don’t regularly shop here will come in and buy and browse other items we sell as well.”

Resident Jenny Sherwood said that when the Mega Millions jackpot gets that big she makes sure to buy $5 worth of tickets. Since Powerball went up to $2 per ticket, Sherwood has stopped playing that game and concentrates her allotted lottery money on Mega Millions.

“If I won I would take care of my three sons and my nieces,” Sherwood said. “I would donate $1 million to St. Jude’s Hospital right away. I’m 76 years old now so there are a lot of other charities I’d give to as well.”

Resident Jorge Alvarado said that he is a regular Mega Millions player but won’t buy tickets if the jackpot is only $1 million. But for the $363 million jackpot, Alvarado made sure to buy a few more.

“When it’s real high I buy more tickets,” Alvarado said. “The bigger it gets, the better it is.”

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