Renfrew -- The Renfrew Victoria Hospital Foundation has the perfect Christmas present at a cost of only $5.
That $5 gift is a ticket for the Foundation’s Catch The Ace draw and with week #48 in play, there is a strong chance that elusive Ace of Spades may be drawn Thursday evening. That little $5 gift could very easily turn into a $545,000 gift.
Patti Dillabough, the Foundation’s Executive-Director said that although the second edition of the successful lottery may not have the same electric buzz as its predecessor did in the early months of 2020, there is a real community excitement about the 2021 edition.
“No matter how much is in the jackpot, the first Catch the Ace really captured the spotlight when the chance to win more than $1 million was a selling feature,” she said. “Unlike the previous lottery when we had vendors in Arnprior and Pembroke and pretty much all places in between, we are limiting our sales to the catchment area the hospital services. So instead of people coming from as far away as Ottawa or Deep River to purchase tickets, we are seeing the majority of our sales going to the immediate Renfrew area.”
Ms. Dillabough said if ticket sales remain steady for the last two days of week #48, the number of tickets sold this week will be approximately 25,000.
“One of the spinoff effects has been a modest bump for our local vendors because people still like to go into a store and buy the tickets in person,” she said. “We are not selling tickets online or over the phone. Last week our winner was from Pembroke and she picked up her cheque for $24,177 and she likely spent a little of her winnings here.”
Unlike the previous version when the weekly draw was held Thursday evenings, this year the weekly draw is held at the hospital and streamed live on Facebook.
To date, more than $845,145 has been raised for the hospital and all proceeds will be directed towards enhancing the Emergency Department and upgrading the medical equipment required by the emergency medical team to provide the best in care.
At the height of the first draw in 2020 and as the jackpot grew in size the weekly draws were at Finnigan’s Road House with an Ontario Provincial Police officer in attendance as well as about 200 people.
Bruce McIntyre, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, The Eganville Leader