Mega Millions Jackpot Officially Hits $1 Billion

(KFSM) — Hours before the drawing Friday (Oct. 19), the Mega Millions jackpot officially hit $1 billion.

The total was reached about 11 a.m. amid high sales of Mega Millions lottery tickets in anticipation of Friday night’s drawing. It’s the second largest jackpot in history, trailing a $1.586 billion drawn on Jan. 13, 2016.

The cash option for the drawing would be nearly $905 million before taxes. Otherwise, winners could get the jackpot over a 26-year annuity payment. Pre-tax, that’s about $38.5 million per year.

The jackpot drawing will take place at about 10 p.m. on Friday. You can watch the drawing during 5NEWS at 10.

Powerball is also climbing in jackpot numbers. The jackpot for Saturday’s drawing is currently estimated at $430 million.

Donna Bragg with the Arkansas Scholarship Lottery said there mission is to sell lots of tickets to help Arkansas students pay for college.

Each year $781 million dollars in lottery money goes to pay for at least 300,000 scholarships.

“These are the kind of tickets that provide more revenue to scholarships. So when you see jackpots get huge like this, it also means really great news for the state and scholarship recipients,” she said.

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