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Brisk Ticket Sales Push Powerball Jackpot to $500M

The next drawing of the multi-state lottery game is Wednesday.

The lure of a record jackpot has led to brisk Powerball ticket sales and a jump in the amount of Wednesday night's payout.

First predicted to be $425 million (which would have been a new record), Wednesday night's multi-state game now boasts a jackpot of $500 million, according to Maryland State Lottery officials.

A winner choosing the immediate cash value (as opposed to selecting an annuity option) would win $327 million.

The $500 million prize is Powerball's largest jackpot since the game's inception in 1992, according to lottery officials.

Maryland gamblers have had some considerable luck with the game since the state began participating in 2010.

In Sept. 2011, a couple bought a winning ticket worth $108.8 million in Harford County. Just three months later, a Pennsylvanis couple won $128 million with a ticket purchased in Cecil County, according to a lottery press release.

The largest Powerball jackpot to date, $365 million, was won in February 2006 by eight ConAgra Foods coworkers in Nebraska.

Powerball is played in 42 states and the District of Columbia.

The next Powerball drawing will be held at 11:22 p.m. Wednesday. WBAL-TV Channel 11 airs the drawings in Baltimore.

Lottery game drawing results are also available on the Maryland Lottery website.

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