Colorado Lottery

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Colorado Lottery mascots
The Colorado Lottery Dream Machine in Pueblo, CO.

The Colorado Lottery is run by the state government of Colorado. It is a member of the Multi-State Lottery Association (MUSL).

The Colorado Lottery began on January 24, 1983, initially selling only scratch tickets. Its first drawing took place on April 23, 1983.[1]

Colorado Lottery games include Cash 5 (with a 5-of-32 matrix), Pick 3, Colorado Lotto, Mega Millions, and Powerball; it also sells scratch tickets. Colorado has offered fewer drawing games than most US lotteries even though it began in the early 1980s; Powerball was not available in Colorado until 2001. Colorado joined Mega Millions on May 16, 2010, the same day as South Dakota.

Colorado joined Lucky for Life on July 17, 2017, making the game available in 20 states and the District of Columbia. (The game began in Connecticut in 2009 as Lucky-4-Life.)

Colorado Lottery revenues are directed, by a state constitutional amendment approved by voters in 1992, to outdoor recreation, parks, trails, rivers, wildlife, and open space. The Great Outdoors Colorado (GOCO) Trust Fund [1] distributes 50 percent of Lottery proceeds through competitive grants to local governments and land trusts, while 40 percent is distributed to the Conservation Trust Fund, and 10 percent goes to Colorado Parks and Wildlife. After the GOCO cap is met, proceeds fall into the BEST fund (Building Excellent Schools Today).[2]

Current drawing games[edit]

Cash 5[edit]

Cash 5 began in 1996. It draws 5 of 32 numbers. The jackpot is $20,000.

Pick 3[edit]

Pick 3 began in April 2013. It draws 3 of 10 numbers (0-9) and is played by betting amounts of $0.50 to $5.00 on various bet types including Exact Order, Any Order, Front Pair, Back Pair, etc. The jackpot is $2,500.

Colorado Lotto[edit]

On January 24, 1989, Colorado Lotto began. Initially it was drawn Saturdays. On July 18, 1990, Wednesday drawings were added. Six of 42 numbers are chosen. The jackpots begin at $1 million; games cost $1. The largest Lotto jackpot in the history of the Colorado Lottery was $27 million, won by Kim Walker of Boulder in 1992.


Since April 2001, Colorado has been a member of MUSL. Powerball's jackpots begin at $40 million; it is drawn Wednesday and Saturday nights. Players pick 5 numbers from 1 to 69, and 1 number out of 26.

The largest Powerball jackpot in the history of the Colorado Lottery was won in August 2014. Claude G, a tow truck operator from the small Western slope town of Rifle, won the $90 million prize.[3]

Mega Millions[edit]

Main article: Mega Millions

On October 13, 2009 the Mega Millions consortium and MUSL reached an agreement in principle to cross-sell Mega Millions and Powerball in US lottery jurisdictions. Most lotteries with either game began selling tickets for both on January 31, 2010. The Colorado Lottery Commission approved Mega Millions at its meeting in February. Mega Millions tickets have been sold in Colorado since May 16, 2010. The Colorado Lottery has not yet had a Mega Millions jackpot winner.

Future draw game(s)[edit]

Lucky for Life[edit]

Main article: Lucky for Life

Lucky for Life began as a Connecticut-only game, Lucky4Life, in 2009. Three years later, it altered its name to the current Lucky for Life, adding five lotteries and becoming a regional game. More changes, in 2013, added a second "lifetime"-prize tier, and a cash option for annuity winners. The current version began in January 2015; players choose 5 of 48 white balls, and a green "Lucky Ball" from a second set of 18 balls. The game continues to be drawn in Connecticut with classic-style drawing machines. As of October 2015, there are 16 lotteries offering LfL, with 6 more, including Colorado, joining by 2016.

Top prize is $1,000-per-day-for-life (or $5,750,000 cash), while second prize is $1,000-per-week (or $390,000 cash).

Former games[edit]

MatchPlay (ended June 29, 2012)[edit]

MatchPlay was drawn on Tuesdays and Fridays. Games were $2 each; each play consisted of three sets of six numbers. The first set could either be chosen by the player, or as a computer-generated "quick pick"; the other two always were quick picks. Six of 38 numbers were drawn. Prizes were won in two ways: "line play" (matching enough numbers in any of the six-number sets), or "combination play" (if enough of the 18 numbers across the three sets were matched. Some $2 plays won in both categories.

An example of a game similar to MatchPlay is Pennsylvania's Match 6.


External links[edit]