Mega Millions lottery jackpot soars to $363 million
The Mega Millions jackpot has climbed to $363 million, and if a winning number is drawn Tuesday night, the lucky ticket holder will be able to choose a cash option payout of $259.8 million, California lottery officials said.
When the drawing occurs at 8 p.m., ticket holders will be vying for the third-largest Mega Millions jackpot of all time, according to KTLA-TV.
The total is rapidly approaching the state record, a $390 million payout won in March 2007.
After Friday’s drawing for $290 million came and went without a jackpot winner, officials had projected the pot–-based on ticket sales at the time of drawing–-would grow to $356 million.
On Monday, they upped the figure by $7 million, saying sales have outpaced expectations.
The lottery places the odds of winning Mega Millions at about one in 1 in 176 million. The retailer who sells the winning ticket will receive a maximum $1 million bonus.
Tickets will be sold until 7:45 p.m.