Before we begin 2021 with thousands of new Raffle winners, let’s look back at some of our favorite Raffle winner stories from years past.

A Christmas gift for one turned out to be a gift for the whole family

Don DeSaer of Courtland received a Raffle ticket as a Christmas gift from his daughter Amber. After he realized his ticket was worth $1 million on New Year’s Day, he tried to give it back to her, but she refused. Instead Don and his wife split the $1 million prize between their four adult daughters. “The best part is being able to share it with the kids,” said Don’s wife Phyllis.


Raffle gift giving tradition leads to $100,000 win for Twin Cities couple

A family tradition of giving Raffle tickets as Christmas gifts paid off in a big way for Jonathan Schultz and Michelle Ferguson who received a $100,000 winning ticket as a gift from Schultz’s mother. “My mom’s been doing it for about five years,” said Schultz, adding, “I think it’s our turn to buy the Raffle tickets for next year!”


$100,000 Raffle win is icing on the cake for Brooklyn Park man

John Tidrick, a Brooklyn Park resident, won $100,000 on a Raffle ticket that he received as a gift from his wife in 2015. “This is a little icing on the cake,” Tidrick said as he claimed the prize in January 2016. “Between my wife and two girls, I already have everything I want!” he said.


$1 million win a “life-changer” for Waterville couple

Alan and Patricia Potter of Waterville won $1 million in 2015. “It’s going to be a life changer,” said Alan as they claimed a $1 million Raffle prize. “This was meant to be,” said Patricia. The date of the win coincided with the birthdate of her mother, who passed away the previous spring. “She’s definitely shining down on us,” Patricia said.


Beginners luck leads to $100,000 win for Faribault man

Aric Owens of Faribault is proof that it only takes one ticket to win. To top it off, the first Raffle ticket he ever purchased was worth $100,000! Owens said he decided to try his luck playing Raffle after he heard about the game from a co-worker. “He told me the odds of winning are a lot better since they only sell a limited number of tickets, so I thought I’d give it a try.”


Military duty postpones $100,000 prize claim for Waconia brothers

Military duty postponed a $100,000 prize claim for brothers Philip and Nicholas Litfin who received the winning Raffle ticket as a Christmas gift from their grandma. Since they were both serving in the U.S. Navy at the time of their win, they couldn’t reap the full rewards of their Christmas present until the following June.


Impromptu diaper run leads to $1 million win

In 2009, an impromptu diaper run resulted in a $1 million Raffle win for a Blaine couple. Daryl and Jo Schmidt received the winning ticket as a gift from their daughter-in-law on Christmas Day after she made a last-minute diaper run. “It’s a strange thing,” said Daryl as he claimed the prize. “If she didn’t forget the diapers, we wouldn’t have gotten the ticket!”


Family of 5 gives back after winning $100,000

A family from Maple Grove shared a $100,000 Raffle prize in 2008. “It’s just a nice way to start the new year,” said mom Lori Batts. “We have already been blessed beyond measure — this just adds to it.” The Batts family members each planned to use part of their winnings to give back to a charity of their choice.


40 co-workers from Brainerd share $1 million prize

A group of 40 co-workers from Consolidated Telecommunications Company (CTC) in Brainerd won a $1 million Raffle prize in 2008. “CTC’s Lucky 40” had been pooling $1 per week for Lottery tickets and used their Powerball winnings to purchase Raffle tickets. Each group member received $25,000 before taxes. Plans of orchestrating a donation committee were in the works at the time of the win.


Third times a (lucky) charm for Elko New Market man

Charles Wylie of Elko New Market was the first $1 million Minnesota Lottery winner of 2020! 2019 was only the third year that he purchased Minnesota Millionaire Raffle tickets. "I had two strikes and this year it was a home run,” he said with a smile.