BOISE -- The potential winner of Friday's record-shattering Mega-Millions lottery will hit it bigger than anyone in history.
Lottery officials have confirmed the game's jaw-dropping payout is now expected to be more than $620 million. In case you were wondering, that's a mega record.
The whopping sum also makes previous Mega Millions lottery records at $380 and $390 million look like small potatoes.
However, the world's newest millionaire will have an important choice immediately after the numbers are drawn. That's because he or she will have to choose how to accept the winnings -- either in a lump sum of $460 million before taxes, or through 26 annual payments of nearly 25 million bucks each for the grand total.
Tough decision, huh?
To put the giant wad of cash into perspective, consider that some wealthy, island nations barely crack the $600 million mark when it comes to their annual gross domestic product.
In other words, Friday's lottery winner will get more cash than the entire Turks and Caicos island chain makes in a calendar year.
In fact, Friday's winner could afford to buy one of those islands -- the pricey and beautiful Emerald Cay -- a $48 million dollar retreat that comes complete with remote-controlled drawbridge.
Of course, there would still be a lot of spending money left over after that.
The big question is: what would you do with the money?And perhaps more importantly: how would you take the payout?
While some folks told KTVB they couldn't imagine finding a way to spend all that dough, others said they had it all planned out.
Chris Buckley from Yakima, WA told KTVB he'd buy a new truck, pay-off his house, and travel the world.
Marc Burtsell is a Boise native who told KTVB he'd buy a vintage WWI tank, and then split the rest of the money with his family.
Jacie Madson is also from Boise. She says her strategy would be different.
My family and I talked about it -- and we'd buy a whole subdivision and all move there and live in it, Madson told KTVB.
The Mega Millions drawing will take place at 9 p.m. on Friday. You can purchase tickets until 7:55 p.m. on Friday. You can check the results on TV and the web.
You can also find an interesting breakdown of how various states would tax the winnings.
According to the lottery game's website, Mega Millions is a multi-state lottery game with MEGA jackpots and MEGA fun.
The game is available in 42 states, the District of Columbia and the U. S. Virgin Islands. Jackpots start at $12 million. Each play costs just $1.00.
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