olg winner toronto

Hefty $100 lotto ticket turns into $1 million jackpot for five GTA coworkers

A pricey Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation (OLG) scratch ticket has allowed five coworkers from the Toronto-adjacent area to reap the rewards of a gigantic jackpot.

Giacomo Giammarco of Woodbridge, Andrea Pimental of Brampton, Carlo Anania of Mississauga and Elizbeth Pedro and Melanie Cabral of Brampton are the lucky winners of a $1 million prize from the OLG INSTANT ULTIMATE Dec. 31 draw. 

The five friends are also facilities industry coworkers and have been patiently playing the lottery together for a very long time.

Pedro convinced the group to drop a hefty $100 on the INSTANT ULTIMATE game, which has the best odds of winning of any scratcher on the market - and it seems she made the right decision, as that hundred bucks now has an additional four zeroes tacked on the end.

"It was January 1st when I was checking the ticket with my husband and he said, 'You won,'" recalls Cabral while claiming the group's hilarious novelty cheque at the OLG Prize Centre in Toronto.

Superstitious lotto players might want to visit the location where this lucky ticket was purchased to try their hand at winning.

Bob's Variety on Keele Street in North York might just have another jackpot ready to claim if you believe lightning strikes the same place twice.

Pedro thought it was a New Year's Day prank and wasn't expecting to kick off 2023 with a bunch of coins in the bank.

The group now has ambitious plans for their prize money, with Anania investing in his retirement and family, Pimental will pay some bills and treat herself to something special while Giammarco will start some investments and Cabral will pay off her mortgage.

"I thought Melanie was just calling to say Happy New Year," Giammarco told the OLG.

These special tickets were available near the end of 2022 and will see 100 per cent of profits donated back to the province for reinvestment.

Lead photo by


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