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Press release

March 17, 2001

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March, 2001 | Winners Stories

'Luck of the Irish' Brings Big Spin® 2000 Contestants More Than $295,000


SACRAMENTO -- California Lottery's "Big Spin® 2000" show airs Saturday, March 17, 2001, in twelve television markets statewide. Contestants on this week's show won a combined total of $297,500.

Fantasy 5TM Dream Machine contestant Samy Girges of Bellflower said, "I have four kids and I would like to take my entire family on a vacation with this money." When asked where the vacation would be, Girges replied quickly, "Egypt!" Girges won $70,000 after playing only 2 of the 5 balls on the Dream Machine.

Next up at the Dream Machine was contestant Doug MacBain, a retired resident of El Monte. He has a couple of things he plans to do with the $65,000 he won. "I'm going to give some money to my favorite charity, and then spend the rest just having fun," he exclaimed!

After Fantasy 5 contestants Samy Girges and Doug MacBain won their prize money, they cheered on Fantasy 5 contestant Adele Sandoval behind the scenes at the Big Spin 2000 show. "Come on Adele," said MacBain. "You can do it," assured Girges. Sandoval, a resident of Montebello, won $60,000 on the Dream Machine. "I'm going to give my house a face lift with the prize money," Sandoval said. At the Fantasy 5 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 worth of Fantasy 5 games are purchased on one playslip.

Baldwin Park resident Nhon Ho is no stranger to winning money from the California Lottery. Ho won $50,000 on a "Sizzlin' Red 7's" Scratchers® ticket last September. He was also this week's SPIN-SPIN-SPIN contestant. Ho, who now owns his own hair salon that he purchased with the money he won from the "Sizzlin' Red 7's" Scratchers® ticket, received a two dollar tip one day at work. He took the two dollars and bought "Big Spin" Scratchers® tickets. "I just had a feeling I should use my two dollars and buy tickets," he said. One of the two tickets Ho bought revealed three "SPIN" symbols on it. That ticket entitled Ho to go to the Big Spin 2000 show where he spun the wheel and won $30,000. Ho said he would use his prize money to buy a house.

Before Manuel Campos of Mountain View plunged his detonator down as one of the contestants of the California Gold game, he explained how much he would like to make it to the final round of play and win some money. However, Campos did not want all of the prize money just for himself, instead he wanted it to also help out his family and friends. "My friend has cancer and needs care and I need to care for my granddaughter," he said. Campos said he was a positive thinker and he knew he would make it to spin the wheel. Campos won $50,000 and plans to use part of his prize money as a down payment on a home in Oregon and donate some to charity.

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 $12 billion for public schools. The California Lottery's contribution equals approximately 2 percent of the state's total education budget. "Big Spin® 2000" is the longest running Lottery game show in the country, airing continuously since 1985.

Samy Girges Bellflower $ 70,000
Doug MacBain El Monte $ 65,000
Adele Sandoval Montebello $ 60,000
Manuel Campos Mountain View $ 50,000
Nhon Ho Baldwin Park $ 30,000
Other California Gold winners   $ 22,500
  TOTAL $297,500
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See More Press Releases: March, 2001 | Winners Stories |