© 2023 Connecticut Public

FCC Public Inspection Files:
WEDH · WEDN · WEDW · WEDY · WNPR
WPKT · WRLI-FM · WEDW-FM · Public Files Contact
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00
0:00
Available On Air Stations

Spain begins drawing for the $2.7 billion 'El Gordo' lottery

A man with a suit and hat decorated in printed lottery tickets stands outside the famous Doña Manolita lottery ticket shop in downtown Madrid, Spain, Wednesday, Dec. 21, 2022.
Paul White
/
AP
A man with a suit and hat decorated in printed lottery tickets stands outside the famous Doña Manolita lottery ticket shop in downtown Madrid, Spain, Wednesday, Dec. 21, 2022.

MADRID — Spain kicked off the festive period Thursday with the celebration of one of its most iconic events, the bumper Christmas lottery, known as "El Gordo" (The Fat One).

The most sought-after prize shells out 400,000 euros ($425,000), or some 325,000 euros after tax, to holders of winning 20-euro tickets, known as décimos.

In keeping with tradition, the winning numbers are called out by children from Madrid's San Ildefonso school in a nationally televised draw at Madrid's Teatro Real opera house.

The incredibly popular lottery will dish out a total of 2.5 billion euros ($2.7 billion) in prizes, much of it in hundreds of smaller prizes.

Purchasing and sharing 20-euro tickets, especially in the run-up to Christmas, is a major tradition among families, friends, co-workers and in bars and sports and social clubs.

Other lotteries have bigger individual top prizes but Spain's Christmas lottery, held each year on Dec. 22, is ranked as the world's richest for the total prize money involved.

Spain established its national lottery as a charity in 1763 during the reign of King Carlos III. Its objective later became to shore up state coffers. It also helps several charities.

The Dec. 22 Christmas lottery began in 1812. Since the beginning, children from the San Ildefonso college have been singing out the winning numbers and matching prizes.

The session, which started at 9 a.m., normally lasts some four hours.

Copyright 2022 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

The Associated Press

Stand up for civility

This news story is funded in large part by Connecticut Public’s Members — listeners, viewers, and readers like you who value fact-based journalism and trustworthy information.

We hope their support inspires you to donate so that we can continue telling stories that inform, educate, and inspire you and your neighbors. As a community-supported public media service, Connecticut Public has relied on donor support for more than 50 years.

Your donation today will allow us to continue this work on your behalf. Give today at any amount and join the 50,000 members who are building a better—and more civil—Connecticut to live, work, and play.

Related Content