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Snellville Man First to Win $500,000 Playing $500,000 Hold ‘Em Poker®

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

ATLANTA – A Snellville man was dealt a winning hand in the Georgia Lottery game $500,000 Hold 'Em Poker®. Johnson Fernandez played the new instant game and became the first person to win the $500,000 top prize.

"I'm a lucky man!" exclaims Fernandez, 48. "I always win something."

In just the last year and a half, Fernandez has won a total of $18,000 playing the instant games $100 Million Cash Spectacular, $200 Million Cash Spectacular and $300 Million Gold Rush.

Even with his lucky streak, Fernandez was stunned to see he won a half-million dollars.

"I didn't believe it. I called my kids, and they didn't believe it either."

Fernandez and his wife, Bendicta, have two sons, ages 18 and 20. According to Fernandez, a store clerk, he was already in the process of purchasing a new home when he won. "I'll use some of my winnings towards my new house," he shares. "I also plan to pay some bills and buy my younger son a new car."

ABC Convenience Store, located at 873 N. Main St. in Cornelia, sold the $500,000 Hold 'Em Poker® top prize ticket.

$500,000 Hold 'Em Poker® is a $5 instant game with a $500,000 top prize. With over $52 million in total cash prizes and 5,100 World Poker Tour® Merchandise Prize Packs, $500,000 Hold 'Em Poker® is full of fun and excitement.

Since its first year, the Georgia Lottery Corporation has returned over $8.4 billion to the state of Georgia for education. All Georgia Lottery profits go to pay for specific educational programs including Georgia's HOPE Scholarship Program and Georgia's Prekindergarten Program. More than 900,000 students have received HOPE Scholarships, and more than 700,000 4-year-olds have attended the statewide, voluntary prekindergarten program.


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Kimberly Starks
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