Lottery Post’s guide to 2020 holiday raffles

By Kate Northrop

For many lottery players, the upcoming holiday season represents the return of raffle games, many of which offer their best odds of winning $1 million or more.

At Lottery Post, we’ve always held pride in our detailed lottery results reporting, even for special drawings like raffles that are often overlooked. In 2020 we continue that tradition, and we’ll publish the winning raffle numbers in each state and country conducting a raffle drawing this year.

Back in 2005, when the first states began recognizing the opportunity of seasonal raffle games and established annual and bi-annual raffles, Lottery Post took note and worked to provide the most accurate and fast results for our community of players.

With the popularity of raffles peaking during the holiday season, it makes complete sense — take a look at Spain’s raffle that takes place around Christmas every year. The Spanish Christmas Lottery, also known as El Gordo, is the largest lottery draw in the world, and it’s currently boasting a whopping €2.4 billion (US$2.86 billion) in total prizes to be awarded next month.

One of the aspects making raffle games so attractive for lottery players is that the odds of winning the top prize are fixed, because the number of tickets available for purchase is normally a limited number. And if all the tickets do not sell out by draw time, that means your odds of winning are even better.

As always, after the raffle drawing check Lottery Post’s Lottery Results page for your state or country. We publish all the results in an easy-to-read grid format, which is simple to search for your raffle numbers using your web browser’s “Find” feature, typically accessed by pressing Ctrl+F on your computer keyboard. On a phone, you can search a page for text using either a menu command or on the iPhone’s Safari web browser you enter the text in the URL entry space and select “On This Page” in the search suggestions box.

Lottery Post’s summary of the states with holiday raffle drawings returning this year can be found below. We’ve also included a bonus section for the special Powerball prizes that will be offered on New Year’s Eve.

Idaho

The Idaho Lottery’s popular $1,000,000 raffle, which has been running for well over a decade, is making its anticipated return. For $10 a ticket, the Idaho Lottery is advertising the “best odds ever at winning $1,000,000.” There are also other prizes available, including two prizes of $10,000 and 250 prizes of $200. Only 250,000 available tickets means that players will have a 1 in 250,000 shot at winning the Grand Prize. With 47% of the tickets already sold, sales for raffle tickets end when they are sold out or at the final minute of 2020, whichever comes first.

The winning numbers will be announced on Jan. 5, 2021.

Ireland

The Christmas Millionaire Raffle Draw returns this year for Ireland. One lucky Irish player will win €1 million, but 6,009 players in total will have the opportunity to win a prize ranging from €500 to the €1 million grand prize. Tickets are €25 each, and it’s first come, first served for all 500,000 available tickets until 10:00 pm on Dec. 31, 2020. The odds of winning the top prize are 1 in 500,000, but chances of winning will vary depending on how many tickets are sold.

The drawing will take place on Dec. 31, 2020.

Kansas

The Kansas Lottery is holding its Holiday Millionaire Raffle once more. With the exception of 2016, the Kansas Lottery has held the iconic seasonal draw for the past consecutive 11 years. This year, the raffle has Early Bird drawings that give players chances to win $30,000 before the Grand Prize drawing. Players who buy tickets before an Early Bird drawing will also be eligible to win the $1 million Grand Prize at the very end of the raffle. The next and final Early Bird drawing takes place on Dec. 6, 2020. The odds of winning the $1 million Grand Prize are 1 in 150,000, and ticket sales end when all 150,000 available tickets are sold out. Tickets sell for $20 each.

The Grand Prize drawing will take place on Jan. 5, 2021 at approximately noon. Prizes above $1,000 must be claimed in-person or by mail at Lottery headquarters.

Minnesota

For the 15th year in a row, the long-awaited Millionaire Raffle is making its way back to Minnesota. This year, the Minnesota Lottery is offering two Grand Prizes of $1 million, five second-tier prizes of $100,000, and five third-tier prizes of $25,000, among others. With 700,000 tickets available priced at $10 each, players have a 1 in 350,000 chance of scooping up the raffle’s top prize, as long as they can get their hands on a ticket before they sell out.

Results are announced on Jan. 1, 2021.

Montana

The seasonal Montana Millionaire raffle is back, promising one lucky Montanan a top prize worth $1 million. On top of that, the Montana Lottery is offering an extra $250,000 cash prize along with more tickets, more prizes, and better overall odds. There is also one more Early Bird drawing left for an extra chance to win $15,000, which takes place on Dec. 11, 2020. All Early Bird tickets will still be eligible to win the Grand Prize, with odds at winning the Grand Prize being 1 in 180,000. Tickets are priced at $20 each. Sales will end at the final minute of 2020, on Dec. 31 at 11:59 om, or once all 180,000 tickets are sold. As of now, there are about 127,000 tickets left.

The Grand Prize drawing will take place on Jan. 1, 2021.

Pennsylvania

Pennsylvania Lottery Players are likely familiar with the Millionaire Raffle, which has the distinction of being the first holiday raffle drawing in the United States, on Dec. 31, 2005. The Pennsylvania Lottery has conducted holiday raffle drawings for the past 16 consecutive years, and in prior years has conducted multiple raffle drawings per year.

Like in previous years, the Lottery is offering 500,000 tickets for sale at $20 each through Jan. 2, 2021 at 8:00 pm or until every ticket is sold. There are also seven weekly drawings for an extra $100,000 prize up until the final drawing. Every ticket purchased will automatically entered into that week’s drawing as well as the final drawing. With four top prizes of $1 million and four second-tier prizes of $100,000, players will have 1 in 125,000 odds for winning either a $1 million prize or a $100,000 prize.

The final drawing takes place on Jan. 2, 2021 around 10:00 pm.

Virginia

Virginia’s New Year’s Millionaire Raffle is making its return. In its 14th year, the raffle that rings in the New Year for Virginians is increasing its available prizes, adding a fourth $1 million top prize and a sixth $100,000 prize. Players can purchase a $20 ticket for 1 in 125,000 odds at winning one of four available top prizes and have until Dec. 31, 2020 to play, or until all 500,000 tickets have been sold.

Winners are announced on Jan. 1, 2021 after 2:00 pm.

Wisconsin

The Wisconsin Lottery is bringing back its Holly Jolly raffle, which gives players the chance to win a $100,000 top prize at $5 a ticket, among 1,565 other prizes. With 125,000 tickets for sale, the odds of winning $100,000 are 1 in 125,000. Tickets must be purchased before Dec. 7, 2020.

The drawing takes place on Dec. 7, 2020.

Multi-state Powerball New Year’s special draw

Players who reside in participating state lotteries will have a chance to take part in the special Powerball First Millionaire of the Year draw. The drawing will air live right after midnight on ABC’s broadcast of “Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve with Ryan Seacrest 2021” and offers players the chance to become the first millionaire of the year. Other hefty prize packages available include an at-home New Year’s Eve Party including (but not limited to) a 70 inch LED TV, a karaoke system, deluxe dinner for eight or a VIP trip for two to New York City. A random draw across participating states will determine who will make it to the final round to be in the running for the game’s top prizes. Entry into the draw varies by state, so players should check entry rules on their respective state lottery’s website.

Participating state lotteries include Arizona, District of Columbia, Florida, Indiana, Kansas, Louisiana, Maine, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee and Texas.

Spain

How could we summarize a list of holiday raffles without mentioning Spain’s El Gordo?

The Spanish Christmas Lottery is the most well-known, largest raffle in history, measured by prize payout. The raffle is also recognized as “El Gordo,” which translates to “The Fat One,” and boasts some of the best odds at winning the jackpot (1 in 100,000). This year will mark the raffle’s 208th edition, and the drawing will take place at the same date as it does every single year, on Dec. 22. Tickets cost €20 each. In the Related Links section of this article, you can find a link to play El Gordo from around the world.

Good luck to everyone buying raffle tickets this year!

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