WINNER, S.D. – The town of Winner has produced a winner — and a $232 million one at that.
The winning ticket for Wednesday night's $232 million Powerball jackpot was sold in this ranching and farming town of 2,800 people in the south-central part of the state.
"How often does something like this happen — a winner in Winner, S.D.?" Norm Lingle, executive director of the South Dakota Lottery, said at a news conference Thursday.
It's the ninth-largest Powerball jackpot ever and the biggest ever paid out in South Dakota, he said.
The ticket-holder has 180 days to claim the prize, and the lottery said it has not received any calls on the jackpot.
"There's certainly no hurry to come in and claim the prize. This is certainly a life-changing, life-altering experience and they need to seek professional advice," Lingle said.
Only two retailers sell Powerball tickets in town: the Ampride and Lil' Feller convenience stores, said Mike Mueller, South Dakota Lottery spokesman. The seller of the jackpot ticket won't be announced until the winner comes forward, he said. The business that sold the ticket gets $50,000.
Lil' Feller Convenience Store owner Brian Schaeffer and Ampride manager Shawn Ulmer said the winner had not contacted them.
Schaeffer hopes someone from town won the bonanza prize.
"It sure would be nice if someobody here locally or the surrounding area won," he said.
As for the possibility of getting a cut, Schaeffer said: "We don't know that it's us. It could be the guys down the street. It's just nice that it was sold here in town."
Residents were wondering who had won.
"I'm hoping it's someone who's deserving," said Bobbie Voegeli, of Winner. "I'm hoping it's someone local."
Dick O'Bryan, a farmer and real estate agent who lives nearby, said "everybody was trying to figure out who it is" when he went to get coffee Thursday morning.
"It's great to have it come into the town. It (might) just as well be here as somewhere else," he said outside the Tripp County Courthouse. "The only bad part about it is my name isn't on it."
Out of the millions of tickets sold for Wednesday night's drawing, only one matched all six winning numbers: five, six, twelve, 16 and 21. The Powerball was seven.
Powerball is played in 30 states, Washington, D.C. and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
Winner, about 200 miles southwest of Sioux Falls, near the Nebraska line, is known for its great pheasant hunting that draws thousands from around the world every fall.