Convenience store manages larger crowds hoping to win jackpot

Convenience store manages larger crowds hoping to win jackpot

CAMPBELLTON, FL (WSFA) - Between the Powerball and Mega Millions people could take home $801 million if they match the winning numbers.

The lottery ticket line in Fortune Liquors and Lotto in Campbellton, Florida, a little more than 20 minutes south of Dothan, was long with people hoping to start their new year with an increase to their bank account. Store manager Sheila Rushin said there was a steady stream of people into the store throughout the day, and she expects more people to start filing in after they get off work.

The Mega Millions drawing is Tuesday night for $361 million. The Powerball Jackpot drawing is Wednesday night for $440 million.

Rushin says the number of people stopping by her store has doubled recently, but it's not because of the chance to win big.

Lottery ticket sales at nearby seller, Panhandle Package, were shut down. It was a popular stop for people traveling from Alabama because of how close it is to the state line and its easy access from Highway 231.

The manager at Panhandle Package confirms the store had been under investigation after a lottery ticket was sold online, which violates Florida lottery rules. The store is now under new ownership and is expected to begin selling lottery tickets again soon.

The manager didn't have an exact timeline for when lottery ticket sales would begin again. WSFA reached out to Florida Lottery officials for specifics on the investigation but have not received a comment yet.

With no lottery tickets being sold at Panhandle Package, customers have shifted to Fortune Liquors and Lotto less than a half a mile away, and owners are working to manage the influx of customers.

"It's increased our business a lot with the lotto. We are expanding and making room because we don't know how long they'll be closed. We're trying to accommodate the people coming here for tickets," said Rushin.

"I've bought them here before, but usually it's just easier with traffic wise to go to the other. Its amazing how that group of people who are all playing scratch offs and everything else have migrated down here now," said Clyde Howell, a customer.

Fortune Liquors and Lotto says for the last three days they've opened an area in the back of the store that has a terminal to sell lottery tickets when lines in the main area of the store get too long.

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