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Press release

March 5, 2004

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March, 2004 | Winners Stories

Contestants on “The Big Spin®” Win More Than $300,000


SACRAMENTO – Fourteen California Lottery players from across the state won a total of $347,500 on “The Big Spin®” show that aired Saturday, March 6, 2004.

Joe Bermudez Jr. from San Jose wins $100,000 playing The Big SpinJoe Bermudez Jr., a painter from San Jose purchased his Big Spin Scratchers® ticket at Paul’s Quik Stop in San Jose and found Spin-Spin-Spin when he scratched it.  “I plan to buy a house and buy a new car with my winnings,” he said.  After spinning the largest lottery wheel on the planet, Bermudez found himself $100,000 richer!

Cathy Williams, a transportation employee from Diamond Bar, won $75,000 playing the “Fantasy 5 Dream Machine.”   Williams, who purchased her ticket at TV Liquor Mart in Diamond Bar, explained, “I play in an office pool of 22 co-workers and this prize will be shared amongst us.”  David Woahn, a retiree from Santa Clarita was next to challenge the “Fantasy 5 Dream Machine,” and won a $70,000 prize.  Woahn bought his ticket at Gourmet Liquor in Newhall. Woahn told interviewers, “I’m going use my prize help my family and pay off bills.”  Hardy Leonard, a salesman from Los Angeles ended his turn at the “Fantasy 5 Dream Machine” with a $55,000 prize.  Leonard bought his ticket at Arcade Liquor in Los Angeles and told Lottery staff, “I’m going to buy a house with my prize.” 

Cathy Williams from Diamond Bar wins $75,000 playing Alwyn Torres from Azusa and Stella Staley of Isleton “Came up Aces” in the first round of “Aces High.”  In round two, Torres won a chance to spin the wheel, while Staley won $5,000.  Torres, who bought his Big Spin Scratchers® ticket at Clubhouse Liquor in Azusa, spun the wheel for $25,000.  He told Lottery staff, “I’m going to use my prize money towards a down payment on a home.”

“The Big Spin®” show is just one of the many entertainment choices the California Lottery offers that ends up paying big to players and ultimately to California’s public schools.  For a third consecutive year, the Lottery has contributed $1 billion to public education.

Winner’s Summary

Joe Bermudez Jr.   San Jose         $100,000
Cathy Williams Diamond Bar $75,000
David Woahn Santa Clarita $70,000
Hardy Leonard Los Angeles $55,000
Alwyn Torres Los Angeles $25,000
Other Aces High Contestants   $2,500
  TOTAL $347,500


How to play “Fantasy 5 Dream Machine”
Contestants on the “Fantasy 5 Dream Machine” game have up to five chances to launch a ball into one of the five bins in the pinball-type game.  Each bin represents a cash amount.  Prizes are cumulative, but only one ball may land in each bin to claim the prize amount.  Contestants appearing on this segment qualify by mailing an entry form to the Lottery after purchasing $5 of Fantasy 5 games on one playslip.

How to play “Aces High”
“Aces High” replaced “California Gold” and is the newest game on “The Big Spin®” show.  Ten “Aces High” contestants will either win a dollar amount ranging from $1,750 to $4,000 or get one of two “Ace” cards.  The two contestants who end up with an “Ace” card advance to the second round.  The object of the second round is to get a better hand than the opponent, the best hand being four of a kind.  The contestant with the lower hand wins $5,000 and the contestant with the higher hand goes on to spin the wheel, for a chance to win $3 million!
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