Wyoming fisherman snags Cowboy Draw jackpot

March 17, 2017

Cheyenne, Wyoming

Catching his largest brown trout on the Popo Agie River in Lander, Mike Wieser felt like one of the luckiest guys in Wyoming for that moment. That was Monday, March 13. Standing at a convenience store, grabbing some coffee the next morning, he learned he didn’t use up all his luck on the river. 

Wieser became the jackpot winner of Wyoming’s own game, Cowboy Draw, after the March 13 drawing. However, he didn’t learn until the next morning that he was the winner of the fifth largest Cowboy Draw Jackpot of $746,022.

“I was holding my coffee and just shaking when we read the numbers, and I was told I won it all,” Wieser said. 

Wieser, a Wyoming native, carefully stowed his ticket where it would be safe, and took off toward his job site while calling his boss for advice. “My boss told me not to try and work, and instead get to Cheyenne as quick as I could,” Wieser said.

At that moment, Wieser said the feeling hit him, and he needed to tell his girlfriend Jennifer Holling as soon as possible. It took him nearly two hours to reach her, which he said was the longest two hours of his life. “Her response to me was, ‘Don’t drink a Redbull or your heart will explode.’”

“I also told him not to lose the ticket,” Jennifer added.

Wieser is a regular player of WyoLottoTM games, and said, “I try to play when I feel lucky, and sometimes I like to do quick picks, but sometimes I just like to choose my own numbers.” Wieser said he had two sheets filled out with his own numbers, and with one sheet in each hand, for some reason he chose the sheet with 7, 11, 33, 39 and 44. Those numbers all have meaning and have been lucky at some point or another for Wieser, including when he won $250 in roulette on a three number streak of guessing the right number to fall. Those numbers now have a value of $746,022. 

With spring break just around the corner, this money will help Wieser and his girlfriend to take a vacation to the Grand Canyon with their children. Wieser said he will also make sure to put aside plenty for his 10-year-old daughter, Mya, to go to college. He will also be able to upgrade his pickup and pay off medical bills. 

Wieser works at Sheet Metal Specialties out of Casper, Wyo., and said, “I will definitely keep working there. I love what I do and everyone I work with.” 

WyoLotto offers four unique draw games including Cowboy Draw, Lucky for Life, Mega Millions, and Powerball.

WyoLotto’s Cowboy Draw turns two while celebrating fifth largest jackpot winner

March 14, 2017

In addition to the excitement of celebrating Cowboy Draw’s second anniversary on March 15, a lucky player who purchased a ticket in Casper, Wyo., hit the fifth largest jackpot during Monday’s drawing for $746,022. The ticket was sold at Mountain View Conoco, located at 5076 Yellowstone Highway.

With over $8.9 million in winnings in the last year alone, Wyoming’s game continually brings excitement to the Cowboy State. 

“Players’ excitement is growing as it has been nearly five months since we’ve seen Cowboy Draw’s jackpot grow to this size,” said Jon Clontz, WyoLottoTM CEO.

Cowboy Draw made history when it launched in March 2015 as the first WyoLotto game sold only in Wyoming. Since then, the game’s popularity has grown with thousands of $1,000 winners and multiple jackpot wins, including a record-setting $1.8 million winner in February 2016.

Clontz said, “It’s hard to believe we launched this game two years ago. Cowboy Draw has become such a player favorite with its western flair, better odds, and two chances to hit the jackpot starting at $250,000. It truly captures the spirit of Wyoming and WyoLotto.”

In the last year, over 392,000 Cowboy Draw winners have taken home cash prizes. Jackpot winners from the last year include:

  • May 6, 2016: Eddie Salas of Green River won $1.3 million
  • May 23, 2016: Shirley Caro of Kaycee won $407,000
  • June 30, 2016: Jim Cunkle of Casper won $582,000 
  • Oct. 17, 2016: Anonymous player, Rawlins, won $1.5 million
  • Nov. 24, 2016: Anonymous player, Cody, won $573,000
  • Jan. 10, 2017: Anonymous player, Sheridan, won $650,000

Cowboy Draw is Wyoming’s own game, and it is a draw game similar to Powerball and Mega Millions. Players choose two sets of five numbers ranging from 1 to 45. A player who correctly matches all five numbers is the jackpot winner. Players who correctly match four, three, and two numbers also win cash prizes of $1,000, $20, and $5, respectively. Each $5 ticket provides two chances to win. The weekly drawings for Cowboy Draw are held every Monday and Thursday at 2 p.m. MST. The jackpot starts at $250,000 and keeps growing until someone wins.

Players can follow the jackpot amounts for all four games playable in Wyoming by stopping by a local retailer, or by visiting wyolotto.com. Games available in Wyoming include Mega Millions, Powerball, Lucky for Life and Cowboy Draw.

Wyomingite wrangles $100,000 windfall

February 28, 2017

A Wyoming Powerball winner scored $100,000 after the 9 p.m. drawing on Wednesday, Feb. 22. Today, WyoLottoTM officials announced that Curtis Reid of Mills, Wyo. is the lucky Powerball winner. The winning ticket was sold on Feb. 21 at the Maverik in Green River, Wyo., located at 59 Uinta Drive.

Although Reid didn’t hit the $435 million jackpot like the winner in Indiana, he did increase his luck by choosing the Power Play and boosting his winning ticket from $50,000 to $100,000. Reid purchased his winning ticket when he travelled through Green River as a truck driver for the Food Bank of the Rockies, a program that supplies food to hunger relief agencies throughout Wyoming.

Reid has won money from the lottery before, but said he was excited to see this winning ticket because, “There are a couple more zeros this time!”

Reid had an inkling that he may be a winner while listening to the radio and realizing the jackpot-winning ticket shared some of the same numbers as his ticket. He remembers thinking, “I have some of those numbers, I’d better check this out.” 

After plugging in his numbers four times using WyoLotto’s online number checker, Reid said, “I couldn’t believe it, I was pretty shocked!”

Reid plans to pay off his motorcycle and get a new car. The winnings will also allow him to tour Wyoming and travel by motorcycle to Minnesota this summer. 

Reid said he plans to continue playing WyoLotto games, adding, “The best is yet to come, I will definitely keep playing!”

WyoLotto offers four unique draw games including Cowboy DrawTM , Lucky for Life, Mega Millions, and Powerball. Wyoming has celebrated 1,987,714 winners across the state for all four games, and players have brought home $29,191,618 in total winnings since WyoLotto launched in August 2014.

WyoLotto sends Wright resident to Ireland

February 6, 2017

Following a call from WyoLottoTM, Heather Pridgeon admits that going back to a normal life won’t be easy. The 21-year-old from Wright, Wyo., is still adjusting since learning she’s the retailer winner of WyoLotto’s Trip of a Lifetime giveaway. After only dreaming of travelling, Pridgeon will be living that dream when she visits Ireland to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day.

On December 4, 2016, in celebration of the launch of the new game, Lucky for Life, WyoLotto announced the Trip of a Lifetime giveaway which offered both players and retailers the opportunity to win a trip for two to Ireland.

Today, WyoLotto announced Pridgeon as the retailer winner. She and a guest will travel to the Emerald Isle on an expenses-paid trip that includes roundtrip airfare, hotel accommodations, $3,000 in cash, and a guided tour package. “It seems odd to try and live your life normal again after getting news like this,” said Pridgeon.

Pridgeon has worked alongside her father for seven years at Hank’s Roadside Bar and Grill in Wright, and often sells Lucky for Life tickets to customers. “I love working with my dad, he is one of the most amazing, kind, loving guys in the world,” she said. Pridgeon added, “The best part of working for him is the familiarity and being able to talk to him about anything, which I wouldn’t be able to do with any other boss.”

Whether she and her father were going to a movie, having dinner, or stopping off at the park, the memories of time spent together will always be close to her heart. Pridgeon is now looking forward to creating new memories during their trip to Ireland. 

The Trip of a Lifetime giveaway was the perfect opportunity to recognize and thank players and retailers for the valuable roles they play in WyoLotto’s success. Lucky for Life was added to offer a new style of draw game to  WyoLotto players, who have the chance to win $1,000 a day for life, $25,000 a year for life, and other cash prizes.  

The Wyoming Lottery is a Wyoming brand, born and raised in the Cowboy State. WyoLotto games include Mega Millions, Powerball, Cowboy DrawTM, and now, Lucky for Life.

WyoLotto sends player to Ireland for St. Patrick’s Day

January 24, 2017

On December 4, in celebration of the launch of Lucky for Life, WyoLottoTM announced the Trip of a Lifetime giveaway which offered players the opportunity to win a trip to Ireland for St. Patrick’s Day.

Today, WyoLotto announced Betty Jensen as the winner of the Trip of a Lifetime giveaway. She and her guest will travel to Ireland on an expenses-paid trip that includes roundtrip airfare, hotel accommodations, $3,000 in cash, and a guided tour package.

“Going to Ireland is not even something I have imagined getting to do,” said Betty Jensen, a loyal WyoLotto player and 30-year Rock Springs resident who works at the local hospital. She will be travelling to Ireland with her husband, Wade, and is still stunned that she is the grand prize winner.

Wade added, “We hardly ever win anything, so this is pretty awesome.” Wade and Betty are originally from North Dakota and love the fishing, open spaces, and clean air of Wyoming. 

WyoLotto’s newest game, Lucky for Life, gives players the chance to win $1,000 a day for life along with the opportunity to win $25,000 a year for life or other cash prize options. The Trip of a Lifetime giveaway is the perfect opportunity to recognize and thank players for the valuable role they play in WyoLotto’s success. 

The Wyoming Lottery is a Wyoming brand, born and raised in the Cowboy State. WyoLotto games include Mega Millions, Powerball, Cowboy DrawTM, and now, Lucky for Life.