Pickleball players chip in for lottery tickets —and win $6. That was just the start

It started with a $20 contribution.

The “Chill Dills” — a group of seven pickleball players from Maryland — decided to go in on Mega Millions tickets together, so they all gave one player $20, according to an Aug. 9 Maryland Lottery news release. That player bought tickets for the whole group.

The players said their first attempt won them $6, so they used that prize to buy more tickets. Their next attempt earned them $12, and again they used their prize to buy more tickets for the Aug. 4 drawing.

The night of the drawing, the group got an exciting text, they told officials. They had won a $10,000 prize.

“I was taking my mom home at 10 minutes to midnight,” one of the women told officials. “I said, ‘Hold up!’”

“I was asleep and woke up to see it,” another player said in the release.

After taxes, each player took home about $958, according to officials. The group said they plan to keep playing.

“Our goal is to win enough to build an indoor pickleball center with a hot tub outside,” one of the winners told officials.

Until then, the players have individual plans for their prizes, they told officials.

One player is going to New York City to see “The Lion King” on Broadway, according to officials. Another player is going to St. Louis for a baseball game, and a third player is planning a trip to Turks and Caicos Islands.

The group’s winning ticket was bought at Food Lion in Leonardtown, which is about 55 miles southeast of Washington, D.C.

Many people can gamble or play games of chance without harm. However, for some, gambling is an addiction that can ruin lives and families.

If you or a loved one shows signs of gambling addiction, you can seek help by calling the national gambling hotline at 1-800-522-4700 or visiting the National Council on Problem Gambling website.

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