Powerball fever hits Fresno

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Nearly impossible odds aren't stopping people from lining up to buy tickets, everyone's dreaming of an $800 million Powerball payoff. (KFSN)

The Powerball jackpot has now topped $800 million and Saturday's drawing will be for a record lottery payout.

Nearly impossible odds aren't stopping people from lining up to buy tickets, everyone's dreaming of an $800 million Powerball payoff at Elite Liquors in northwest Fresno. "That's just a little drop in the bucket," Sonny Romias of Fresno said. "If we had that, we wouldn't be in debt all our lives."

The odds of winning four bucks by matching one number and the Powerball - 1 in 92. But winning that jackpot was made much more difficult after Powerball extended the first set of numbers from 59 to 69.

Instructors at Mathnasium in north Fresno say it's highly unlikely you'll win. "It may roll over again," math instructor Juan Escalante said. "The odds are in favor of it rolling over again."

"The chance of winning the Powerball jackpot if you buy a ticket are 292 million to one," said Michael Orkin with the Peralta Community College District.

But that isn't stopping anyone from buying tickets. Rollovers have generated lotto fever. "When we're out there at the stores, people are walking in and they're dropping a lot of money on the counter," said Richard Lopez with the California Lottery District.

Fresno store owner Bob Bhourla said, "people were coming up with words give me $20, give me $90, give $100. Give me $200. And one guy bought $600."

Despite the astronomical odds, people just want a chance.
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