The Maryland Lottery broke several records last week, bringing in nearly $35 million in sales.
Scratch-off sales exceeded $11 million for the first time in the Lottery's history, while Pick 4 had a record-breaking sales week of almost $5 million. Players also benefited from huge payouts in Pick 3 and Pick 4. And, Keno and Keno Bonus brought in a hefty $9.3 million in combined sales.
The $35 million week was the Lottery's third best sales week ever. Only two other sales weeks proved better, and those occurred when Mega Millions jackpots reached $360 million in May 2000, and $328 million in April 2002.
"We are thrilled to see this kind of sales activity," said an elated Buddy Roogow, Director of the Maryland Lottery. "We hope to continue the momentum throughout the remainder of the fiscal year and beyond."
Much of the week's success can be credited to the launch of two unique initiatives - Multi-Match and $20 Million Mania.
Multi-Match, a new Lotto-style game, replaced Lotto after 23 years. Based on initial sales, the new game is already proving to be a popular alternative to its predecessor.
Tickets for Multi-Match went on sale February 2, 2006, and within four days, Multi-Match sales exceeded $1 million - including approximately $400,000 in free coupons. Even without the free coupons, Multi-Match sales for the four days were more than double that of Lotto sales during the same four days of the previous week.
Multi-Match, which boasts more ways to win, produced over 78,500 winners from its first drawing. For the same period, during the previous week, Lotto produced 10,110 winners.
The Lottery also launched $20 Million Mania, a scratch-off with a new $20 price point.
The first of its kind in Maryland, $20 Million Mania features over $20 million in total cash prizes. The oversized scratch-off gives players the chance to win one of two top prizes of $1 million each.
Players can also send in their non-winning tickets for a second-chance drawing for $2 million. Last week's sales of the $20 ticket were just shy of $2.7 million, far exceeding the first week's launch of any other scratch-off ticket in the Lottery's history.
Early indicators show that players are purchasing the $20 ticket - in addition to their other favorite scratch-offs. With much credit going to the $20 ticket, last week's scratch-off sales of more than $11 million shattered last year's record sales of $8.9 million during the same week.
In addition to helping scratch-off sales climb to new heights, the ticket is also helping to raise sales for all lower price-point scratch-off tickets.