Lottery To Celebrate 25th Anniversary Nearly $2.2 Billion In Prizes To Traditional Game Players From

The West Virginia Lottery plans to celebrate its 25th anniversary on Jan. 9 with cumulative sales of nearly $16 billion since the first ticket was sold in 1986, according to Lottery Director John Musgrave. He said more than $5.9 billion in profits has been transferred to state programs; more than $4 billion of that figure was generated by Racetrack and Limited Video Lottery games.

“The $5.9 billion profit could not have been imagined when the first ticket was sold 25 years ago,” said Musgrave.

Musgrave said the Lottery plans a year-long celebration including more than $18 million in prizes for players. “We are introducing three special holographic instant games that include an 'ENTRY' into the '25-YEARS Giveaway' promotional drawing. The tickets will include the one-dollar 'FAST $25' game, the two-dollar '$25 GRAND' game, and the $25 'SILVER SPECTACULAR' game.” He said there would be 376,000 “ENTRY” tickets in the three games; prizes total $12.7 million.

In addition, Musgrave said “The 25-YEARS Giveaway” promotion will offer six monthly drawings to award $2.5 million in prizes, including a grand cash prize of $1 million. Players will be able to enter the drawings at the Lottery’s web site or by US mail. “. . . and this is just the start. There will be announcements of other promotions throughout the year. It is a time to celebrate the Lottery’s good work, as well as the players who have contributed to important projects and programs that have benefited citizens statewide for 25 years.” Musgrave said funding for the $5.3 million in special giveaways is from the Lottery’s unclaimed prize fund.

He said traditional game sales have totaled $3.8 billion, since the first ticket was sold in 1986. Players have received $2.26 billion, representing 57 percent of traditional-game revenue. “The law governing traditional games stipulates that players receive at least 45 percent, so they are significantly ahead of the mandate.”

Musgrave said that through the end of November, the Lottery had generated $688 million of $1.4 billion in sales expected from Fiscal Year 2011. “Transfers of $224 million to the State were made through November 30, which is approximately 50 percent of the $486 million expected for this fiscal year,” he said.

Musgrave announced at the close of the 2010 fiscal year on July 1 that sales had broken the $1.3 billion sales mark. The figure included $181 million from traditional games, $746 million from Racetrack Video Lottery, $397 million from Limited Video Lottery games, $32 million from table games, and $1.6 million from casino gaming at The Greenbrier Historic Resort.