WATCH: A Vancouver Island lottery retailer says he has the luckiest store in B.C. The owner of A-1 Convenience in Port Alberni has sold five tickets worth a million dollars or more since the mid-1990s. On Friday, all the winners, who live in the same neighbourhood near his store, gathered to celebrate. Dean Stoltz reports.
The neighbourhood around the A-1 convenience store in Port Alberni might have more millionaires per capita than other neighbourhoods in most small cities, with the most recent being Madelaine and Harold Thomas (known to friends as Louise and Ian) who won $5 million on the Lotto 6/49 last month.
“She went into shock and the girls behind the counter were screaming.” said Harold.
“Just knowing that you don’t have to worry about money anymore, it’s huge, said Madelaine.
The first big winners at the store of $1 million were Helga and Al Fry back in 1996.
“We gave some money to her children, helped her kids out and invested the rest and still in the same houses we’ve always been in,” said Helga.
Jodi Rai built the store in 1993 and he’s now calling it the luckiest store in BC.
“We are. We sold more millionnaire tickets so you know so we can say we are the luckiest store,” said Rai.
“Why is this store so lucky?’ I don’t know because I bought my ticket again and two months later, I won another $5,000 on the same ticket that I won $2 million on from the store.” said Richard Zoet
“If we’re in Vegas we be playing the same table all the time.” said Rocky Laplante, who won $1 million in 1997
But is it officially the luckiest store in B.C?
“I can’t officially confirm that but what I can tell you is that it’s pretty cool to see how many winners are in this area from one local owner. Not only that though, they’re all coming back here to celebrate this $5 million winner we just had last month it’s pretty amazing,” said BCLC’s Taylor Landry.
And the more times people win here, the more business the store gets.
“So I bought tickets and hopefully on the next,” said Blaine Hastings, who was buying tickets on Friday.
Jodi Rai has made $2,000 for each of the big wins but under new BCLC rules beginning April 1, lotto retailers will make more on a percentage basis.