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North Carolina will begin selling tickets to the Mega-Millions multi-state lottery game next Sunday, officials said Tuesday.

Mega Millions drawings are held Tuesday and Friday nights, so the first drawing available to North Carolina players will be next Tuesday, officials said.

The consortium behind Mega Millions and the Multi-State Lottery Association, which runs the multi-state Powerball lottery, agreed last fall to cross-sell tickets for both games. The groups see the deal as a way to boost lottery revenues for states.

Powerball, which has been sold in North Carolina since 2006, has been available in 32 states, while 12 states participated in Mega Millions.

Mega Millions jackpots start at $12 million and continue to grow until won. Mega Millions holds the record for the largest annuity-based prize ever awarded – $390 million in March 2007. The largest Powerball jackpot was $365 million, hit in February 2006.

North Carolina has had two Powerball jackpot winners. Jackie Alston of Halifax won $74.5 million in November 2006, and Jeff Wilson of Kings Mountain won $88.1 million last June 20.

The North Carolina Education Lottery will continue to sell tickets for Powerball drawings on Wednesday and Saturday nights.

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