Aurora woman has one in five shot at $1 million lottery win on New Year's Eve

  • Linda Perkins of Aurora is one of five finalists who could win a $1 million Powerball prize on "Dick Clark's New Year's Rockin' Eve."

    Linda Perkins of Aurora is one of five finalists who could win a $1 million Powerball prize on "Dick Clark's New Year's Rockin' Eve." Courtesy of the Illinois Lottery

 
 
Updated 12/1/2021 8:34 PM

An Aurora woman has a good reason to try to stay awake when the ball drops in Times Square this New Year's Eve.

There's a one in five chance she'll start 2022 $1 million richer.

 

Linda Perkins is one of five finalists in the "Powerball First Millionaire of the Year" drawing that will take place just after midnight as part of "Dick Clark's New Year's Rockin' Eve with Ryan Seacrest 2022."

"I normally try my best every year to stay awake past midnight, at least until the countdown," Perkins said in a news release from the Illinois Lottery. "But I always seem to fall asleep about five minutes before. This year, I think I'll be wide awake!"

Perkins was randomly selected in a preliminary drawing from a national pool of lottery players from across 29 U.S. lotteries.

In addition to a shot at $1 million, Perkins and the other four finalists received a $10,000 cash prize and an at-home New Year's Eve party package that included a 70-inch television, karaoke system, laptop computer, deluxe dinner for eight and $500 to spend at Party City.

Perkins said in the release that she was "ecstatic" about the $10,000 and party package, but that reaction would be nothing compared to what would happen if her name was drawn on New Year's Eve.

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"I would scream, I would cry, and I would probably pass out," she said.

The other finalists are from Iowa, Louisiana and Pennsylvania.

All the finalists will be watching from their home parties and will be part of live updates throughout the evening featuring country artist and Powerball correspondent Jesse James Decker.

Perkins said the whole thing has been quite a surprise.

"I learned that I won from an email in the middle of my workday, so I was really shocked," she said. "I can't believe it. I'm still having a hard time believing this."

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