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Golden Moon awards first Wheel of Fortune Megajackpot of year

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CHOCTAW, Miss. – Barbara Stogner won $197,586 when she hit a Wheel of Fortune quarters MegaJackpot at the Golden Moon Casino May 24.

The winner, a retail store department manager from Laurel, Miss., said her visit was prompted by the rain, saying she needed something to do. The winner’s husband pointed her in the direction of the winning machine.

“[The machine] was empty, my husband told me to play,” she said. After investing only $10 into the Wheel of Fortune quarters game, Stogner said she was surprised to learn she had won the top progressive prize. When asked about plans for her winnings, Stogner said she will use her prize money to pay off bills and be “debt free.”

The MegaJackpot prize is the first to be paid at the casino so far this year. The Golden Moon Casino has now paid 18 MegaJackpots totaling $8.2 million since 2003, including four prizes of more than $1 million. Three of those were paid on Wheel of Fortune $1 machines.

The first hit in September 2004 for $1.3 million. The second was paid in May 2005 and was also a $1.3 million payout. The third $1 million prize was paid in March 2006. The Golden Moon also paid a $1.2 million prize on the popular Megabucks progressive system in January 2005.

The Golden Moon Casino is one of two Mississippi casinos belonging to a Native American progressive gaming network which includes more than 300 tribal casinos nationwide. Each time a coin is played in a linked machine, anywhere in the network, the jackpot accumulates until some lucky winner hits the top jackpot award. Combined, Golden Moon along with sister casino, Silver Star have awarded 43 jackpots totaling more than $19.3 million.