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Press release

February 9, 2002

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February, 2002 | Winners Stories



SACRAMENTO -- California Lottery's "The Big Spin®" show airs Saturday, February 9, 2002, in twelve television markets statewide. Contestants on this week's show win a total of $202,500.

Denise Stewart has been a parent volunteer and a classroom aid at Rancho San Diego Elementary School in El Cajon for four years. She currently volunteers in both 2nd & 3rd grade classes dedicating 2 days a week in the classroom and 5 days a week as playground monitor, making a difference both in and outside the classroom. One of Denise's most valuable strengths is getting students interested in learning. Denise does all of this while being the mother of two, holding down two jobs, and taking a full load of 18 units at a local community college! She is trying to lead by example for her students by extending her education. She often stays up late, after finishing her own studies, to complete projects for the teachers, or make things like bookmarks containing a reader's oath. Her favorite reading day is March 2nd, Dr. Suess's birthday. Denise explains, "To me, he is a hero so we take the entire day and revolve it around his birthday. We read stories all day, watch videos on Dr. Suess and the students take a reader's oath promising to read everyday." Denise was presented the Hero in Education Award by Jeremy London who is best known as Griffin on Party of Five. London is presently working on a feature film, Gods and Generals due out later this year.

The contestant that wins a chance to spin the prize wheel from the California Gold elimination round is Ray Brown, a retiree from Tustin, who wins $100,000. "I would like to help out some friends and my son with this money," said Brown. "I am retired and this could be the opportunity to make my retirement even better." The second runner-up from the California Gold round was Miguel Valadez, a landscaper from Bloomington, who won $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 Bryan Seitz, a machinist from Stockton, who wins $50,000 on the Fantasy 5 Dream Machine. Seitz, who was accompanied to the show by a number of family and friends, said, "I want to pay off some bills and buy a new car, maybe more, depending on how much I win." 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 only Spin-Spin-Spin contestant on this week's show is Chris Clemons, an employee of the IRS who lives in Dinuba who wins $30,000. Clemons is an avid record collector, his personal collection totals more than 15,000 records. "I would like to buy my mom a new car if I win enough money," he explained. "I owe her for having to listen to all my records for so many years." Clemons bought a "Big Spin" Scratchers® ticket which revealed three "SPIN" symbols on one ticket, that ticket entitled him to a direct trip to the prize wheel.

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.


Ray Brown Tustin $100,000
Bryan Seitz Stockton $50,000
Chris Clemons Dinuba $30,000
Other California Gold Contestants   $22,500
  TOTAL $202,500
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