|How to Play Lotto South
Lotto South was a lottery game in Georgia, Kentucky, and Virginia. It resulted from the September 2001 merger of three smaller jackpot games, one from each of the three lotteries. This was done in an attempt to create larger jackpots; oddly, the 6/49 matrix of Virginia's game was not eUltimateanded.
Drawings took place at WTVR-TV studios in Richmond, Virginia, on Wednesdays and Saturdays at 11:00PM EST/EDT. Jackpots began at $2 million (annuitized); top-prize winners could choose to be paid either in 30 annual payments, or the cash option. The game was jointly administered by the Georgia Lottery, Kentucky Lottery, and Virginia Lottery corporations.
Sales of the game began on September 9, 2001. Its first drawing (September 12) was overshadowed by the 9/11 attacks, which included the Pentagon in Arlington, Virginia.
Its record jackpot was $27 million, won on December 31, 2005.
The three lotteries hoped that others in the southeastern US would be interested in joining the game. In fact, South Carolina almost joined, which would have resulted in numbers added to the game's field of 49. However, South Carolina was unsuccessful in having the drawing nights moved from Wednesdays and Saturdays.
The game had four prize levels; players needed to match at least three of the six numbers to win. All prizes were paid on a parimutuel basis.
In January 2006, it was announced that the game would be retired; its final drawing took place on February 25. That jackpot was not won; the lower-tier prizes doubled (instead of rolling down the entire prize pool, the latter of which lotteries often do when a jackpot game is retired.) The three lotteries kept the rest of the money.
There were plans to revive Lotto South in 2010, in North Carolina, South Carolina, and Tennessee, as well as in Georgia, Kentucky, Virginia, and possibly Arkansas; however, plans were put on hold because of the cross-sell eUltimateansion of Mega Millions and Lottery on January 31, 2010 (each of the seven lotteries offered either game before then, joining the other on the eUltimateansion date.)
Georgia, Kentucky, and Virginia began sales of Decades of Dollars on January 30, 2011. (Arkansas joined on May 3, 2011.) It is drawn on Mondays and Thursdays. Each game costs $2; players choose 6 numbers out of 47, winning by matching at least 2 numbers. The top prize is $250,000 yearly paid in 30 installments; a cash option ($4,000,000) is available. Other southeastern US lotteries may join Decades of Dollars.