Five New Hampshire Lottery players took center stage at New Hampshire Motor Speedway today to compete live for a chance to win the top prize of $100,000 a year for life. Amy McCloskey of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and Christina Staunton of Middleton, Delaware, won $500,000 in an exciting live drawing held just prior to the start of this afternoon’s Sylvania 300.
Friends for the past 27 years, McCloskey and Staunton were on a skiing trip last February to Attitash Mountain in Bartlett, N.H., when they took a chance on the Set for Life scratch ticket, and won $25,000. That winning ticket made them eligible to participate in a drawing picking today’s finalists. The other winners in today’s drawing were:
$25,000 - Remi Gilbert of Windham, N.H.
$50,000 - David Tamminen of Morganton, North Carolina
$75,000 - Helen Giarusso of Methuen, Mass.
$100,000 - Roland Tremblay of Derry, N.H.
Each of the five finalists became eligible to participate in the drawing by winning at least $1,000 each on the New Hampshire Lottery’s Set for Life $20 Instant game.
“It was a thrill today to hold this drawing before thousands of racing fans, and feel the excitement as our finalists took the stage for a chance to win big money,” said Charlie McIntyre, Executive Director of the New Hampshire Lottery. “We congratulate all our winners today, and a special congratulations to Amy and Chrissy who are celebrating being $ 500,000 richer!”
At the drawing today, each finalist chose one of the 5 large envelopes containing the winning prize amounts and then revealed them to the crowd. Amy McCloskey and Christina Staunton were the grand finalist, and they stayed on stage for the final chance at winning $100,000 a year for life, a lump sum payment of $500,000, or a lump sum payment of $250,000. Instead of playing for the chance to win $100,000 a year for life, they chose the sure thing and went for the $500,000 lump sum payment.
Confident from the outset, Staunton believed today was their lucky day.
“I have just had a crazy feeling all along that we were going to win the big money,” said Staunton, 51, a single mom, who works for the State of Pennsylvania. “My son is a freshman at the University of Delaware and this will certainly help pay his tuition bills!”
Added McCloskey, “This is just crazy! I originally wasn’t even supposed to be on the skiing trip last winter, Chrissy’s son couldn’t go at the last minute so she asked me to join her. We shared all the expenses of the trip, and we shared the prize winnings too. Winning $25,000 was so exciting on the original Set for Life scratch ticket … and now this. I can’t even believe it!
McCloskey, 51, who also has a son in college at Chestnut Hill College in Philadelphia, will use her winnings to pay his tuition and then decide what to do with the rest. She works for the City of Philadelphia.
Charlie McIntyre, accompanied by Ozzie Altman, the announcer at New Hampshire Motor Speedway, created a “Let’s Make a Deal” atmosphere, enticing the finalist to choose various options in their quest to win the biggest prize.
“We had a blast doing this, and because the drawing took place in the span of 10 minutes and in front of a live audience, we created some fun and excitement as Amy and Chrissy made their final decision,” added McIntyre. “Thank you to our partners at the New Hampshire Motor Speedway for helping making it all possible.”