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Press release

March 9, 2002

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March, 2002 | Winners Stories



SACRAMENTO -- California Lottery's "The Big Spin®" show airs Saturday, March 9, 2002, in twelve television markets statewide. Contestants on this week's show win a total of $192,500.

Actress Sharon Lawrence presented Nancy Shelton with the California Lottery's Hero in Education Award. Shelton has served public education and school in excess of 21 years and currently she is a teacher's assistant for Alamo and Hemlock Elementary Schools.

Shelton has been volunteering specifically at Alamo Elementary every week for the past 9 years. She has been PTA president and has been on several PTA committees. She was also the coordinator and chairperson of district and school site science fairs. She specializes in tutoring students who need the extra help by taking them aside and working with them one on one. Nancy is also a registered nurse and has volunteered her professional skills to help out with not only eye & hearing exams/screenings, but also blood pressure screenings. She served as a "special friend" to young children, this consisted of spending time, playing games, and sharing stories to help these special ones hurdle successfully through their personal trying times.

Sharon Lawrence is best known for her role as District Attorney Sylvia Costas Sipowicz on NYPD Blue and she also had her own sit-com on NBC called Fired Up. Lawrence has co-starred on the CBS sit-com Ladies Man, and the CBS one-hour drama Wolf Lake, which starred Lou Diamond Phillips.

The contestant that wins a chance to spin the prize wheel from the California Gold elimination round is Maria Cardoso, a sales clerk from Hanford, who wins $100,000. "I would like to use this money to travel. I would like to go to Europe and I would love to go to Australia," said Cardoso. The second runner-up from this California Gold round is Javier Rivera, a furniture refinisher of Los Angeles, who wins $5,000.

California Gold is another way to get to the wheel on "The Big Spin" show. The game starts with 10 contestants whose Big Spin Scratchers® tickets each revealed three "TV SHOW" symbols on one ticket. When instructed, each player pushes down a "detonator" to reveal a prize ranging from $1,750 to $4,000. Two of those contestants will reveal gold nuggets and advance to the second round of play. Once there, they compete to see who can get the closest to 10 units of "gold nuggets" in their mining car without going over. The winner of this round goes to "The Big Spin" prize wheel, while the other contestant wins $5,000.

The Fantasy 5 contestant appearing on this week's show is Joe Brown, a sports official from Palm Springs. Brown wins $40,000 and his plans for this money is to, "Buy my son a truck and I know Palm Springs is hot in the summer, but this summer I won't know about it because I want to travel to somewhere cool." Dream Machine players have up to five chances to launch one ball at a time into one of the five bins in the pinball-type game, each bin representing a cash amount. Prizes are cumulative, but only one ball may land in each bin to claim the prize amount. Players appearing on this segment qualify by mailing an entry form to the Lottery when $5 of Fantasy 5 games are purchased on one playslip.

The lone Spin-Spin-Spin contestant on this week's show is Mohammad Rana, a supervisor in the Air Force from Lompoc who wins $30,000. Rana explained, "I went to Albertson's to get milk to have with my breakfast and decided to buy one Big Spin Scratchers® ticket. That's all it took."

The California Lottery sells its products through a network of more than 18,000 outlets statewide. The Lottery provides 52.7 percent of its revenues to players as prizes, 34.1 percent to public schools and 13.2 percent for administrative expenses, which includes 6.9 percent for retailer commissions. Since 1985, the Lottery has raised more than $13 billion for public schools. The Lottery's contribution equals approximately 2 percent of the state's total education budget. "The Big Spin®" is the longest running Lottery game show in the country, airing continuously since 1985.


Maria Cardoso Hanford $100,000
Joe Brown Palm Springs $40,000
Mohammad Rana Lompoc $30,000
Other California Gold Contestants $22,500
TOTAL      $192,500

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