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Press release

April 23, 2003

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April, 2003 | Winners Stories

Contestants Win $292,500 on "The Big Spin®" Show


SACRAMENTO -- California Lottery's "The Big Spin®" show airs every Saturday in twelve television markets statewide. A total of $292,500 was won by contestants appearing on this Saturday, May 24 on the "Big Spin®" show.

Louis Fedor
Louis Fedor

Fantasy 5 contestants won a total of $240,000 on this week's show. The first Fantasy 5 contestant was Louis Fedor, a retiree from Cambria who won $85,000. Fedor said, "I plan to take my wife to Hawaii with this money." Fedor purchased his ticket at Bob & Jan's Bottle Shop in Cambria. The second Fantasy 5 contestant was Gary Hawthorne, a retiree from Port Hueneme who won $80,000. Hawthorne plans to pay off bills and travel to Nebraska with his winnings. Hawthorne purchased his ticket at Allan's Market & Wine Lotto in Port Hueneme. Next up at the Dream Machine was Vi Ngo, a machinist from Santa Clara who won $75,000. Ngo said, "I will use this prize money to make home improvements." Ngo bought his ticket at Lundy Liquor in San Jose.

Gary Hawthorne
Gary Hawthorne

Dream Machine players 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. 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 contestant that won a chance to spin the prize wheel from the California Gold elimination round was Kirk Karasawa, a professional golfer from Playa Del Rey who won $30,000. Karasawa said, "I'm going to take a vacation with my prize money and buy my wife a new car." Karasawa bought his lucky ticket at Ralph's Grocery in Los Angeles.

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 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 California Lottery sells its products through a network of more than 18,000 retail locations statewide. The Lottery provides 51.9 percent of its revenues to players as prizes, 34.9 percent to public schools and 13.2 percent for administrative expenses, which includes 6.8 percent for retailer commissions. Since 1985, the Lottery has raised more than $14 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.


Louis Fedor Cambria $85,000
Gary Hawthorne Port Hueneme $80,000
Vi Ngo Santa Clara $75,000
Kirk Karasawa Playa Del Rey $30,000
Other California Gold Contestants   $22,500
TOTAL      $292,500
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See More Press Releases: April, 2003 | Winners Stories |