A quick get-away to Gatlinburg, Tennessee, proved to be a life-changing experience for two Midstate friends, who accepted $1 million Monday after learning of their Powerball win from Saturday night's drawing.
By using the Power Play option, their second-tier prize was multiplied from $200,000 to $1 million since the multiplier was five. Of Tennessee Powerball winners, the friends rank second only to the Hubbard family of South Pittsburg, who won a $25.5 million jackpot in March.
Janis Goodwin of Nashville and Frances Davenport of Woodbury (just outside of Murfreesboro) arrived at the Lottery's Nashville headquarters to collect their prize. CEO and President Rebecca Paul was on hand.
"We were numb, and then we jumped up and down and screamed," said Davenport. "We'll take care of our kids first, our debt second, and then we'll do some research and figure out the rest."
Davenport, 50, is a dog groomer with two children. Goodwin, 52, is a former computer programmer with two children. The two have been best friends since they met through work in 1982.
The win marks the first time the new prize level has been won in Tennessee and only the second time among the 29 lotteries who participate in the popular multi-state game. With Power Play, a player who wins a prize other than the jackpot is also guaranteed to multiply their winnings from two to five times, depending on which multiplier is selected for that drawing. There is still a chance to win the escalating jackpot, now estimated at $205 million for Saturday's drawing.
Lotto 5 drawings are held on Monday, Wednesday and Friday at 11:34 p.m.; Powerball drawings are held on Wednesdays and Saturdays at 10:59 p.m. Drawings are held every day at 7:28 p.m. for the Tennessee Lottery's other two online games, CASH 3 and CASH 4.
The Tennessee Lottery began selling its first tickets on Jan. 20, 2004. As of June 30, 2005, the lottery had raised more than $359 million to fund specific education programs.