Lottery players rush for tickets as jackpots both near $400M

by: Berndt Petersen Updated:

HARALSON COUNTY, Ga. - The lottery stars have aligned.

Mega Millions and Powerball are on a record-setting streak. The jackpots for both games are closing in on $400 million dollars each at the same time. That’s never happened before. On Friday, the number one lottery seller in Georgia was packed with players from Alabama.

"I will win the lottery. She's got my lucky number here,” Robert Sanford said.

Since the two big games both had big jackpots, people crossed the state line to the Robinson & Sons store in Tallapoosa to double dip. 

"Hammer! Everybody calls me Hammer,” said one player from the Alabama side of the line, while he stowed his picks under his hat. "That's where I keep them tickets at. Put them tickets up there."


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Most of the players are repeat customers, coming over every now and again. But when news spread that both big games had extra big payoffs, it was time for a road trip.

"Oh yeah, you've gotta play both games. You've got to play both. You can't come and get one and forget about the other. That's like a second option,” Alabama resident Larry Wright said.

Because their state does not have a lottery, Alabama residents said they keep an eye on the size of the jackpots and set aside travel days. With more than $700 million on the line between the two games, guys like Hammer said a trip to the Peach State was a no-brainer.

"I'm gonna win this lottery. I'll buy me a house and put water around it and put alligators in it!" he said.