DENVER, JANUARY 23, 2009 – The Colorado Lottery’s first jackpot game is turning 20. Launched on January 24, 1989, Lotto has turned more than 368 people into millionaires and returned more than $572.3 million to the state of Colorado.
“We consider it quite an achievement that after two decades, Lotto continues to have a loyal following who consider it ‘Colorado’s game,’” said Lottery Director Jack Boehm. “We’re proud that it has lasted so long and contributed so much to Colorado.”

To thank loyal Lotto players, the Lottery will be holding a drawing to give 20 players $100 worth of Lotto tickets. Details on the drawing can be found at www.coloradolottery.com.

Lotto made its debut with a five-city celebration in Denver, Colorado Springs, Pueblo, Fort Collins and Grand Junction. First day sales totaled $218,199, while sales for the first week were $913,390. The game proved so popular, a second drawing was added in July 1990. And, after 20 years, Lotto sales still remain strong. Today, Lotto sales average more than $800,000 per week. And sales for the game are currently tracking $1.2 million ahead of last fiscal year, when Lotto posted sales of $41.1 million – the best performance since fiscal year 2003.

Through the years, Lotto has grown and evolved to meet the needs of its players. A Quick Pick option – which most players opt for today – was introduced in March 1989. In July 1994, the Cash Value option was launched, giving players the choice of taking the jackpot prize as a 25-year progressive annuity, or in a lump sum equal to 40 percent of the estimated annuitized jackpot.

Proceeds from Lotto and the Colorado Lottery’s other games – Powerball, Cash 5 and Scratch – stay in Colorado to improve the quality of life in the state. Through Great Outdoors Colorado, the Conservation Trust Fund and Colorado State Parks, the Lottery has provided funding for building new trails, preserving open space, building recreation centers and protecting wildlife habitat.


January 23, 2009
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