Thursday, January 14, 2016

Record Setting Powerball Sold at Naifeh's Food Market

As I drove in to work, I saw news vans in the parking lot at the tobacco shop. I got butterflies in my stomach. I could hardly contain myself. I called the kids and told them to hurry up! 

Then I got to our store and NOTHING was happening. It was eerily quiet. No press, no vans, nothing.  Just business as usual. It was weird. I don't have a tv in Munford so I was having to get my news from my iPhone and people coming in the store. My lottery rep came by and said we should hear something from headquarters in a little while. 

The kids arrived and joined in my nervous pace. Sandra and Joe called and offered to come down but I told them there was nothing going on not to come. The phones were ringing off the hook. Reporters calling to see if we knew anything. After a few minutes, Ally looks out the front windows of the store and says, is that Sittie and Jidi?! They had driven down and were just circling the parking lot. Ally called them back and told them to come on in the store. 

Nothing was happening. There were even MORE news trucks at the tobacco store and a few at the convenience store but NONE at Naifeh's. Not one. I was getting VERY nervous. We could REALLY use some extra cash. These past couple of years have been a struggle for us at the stores. We have "survived" but with very little cash flow and only by putting more money into the stores. They have improved in the past 6 months, but boy wouldn't it be nice! 

Eventually, I sent the kids to lunch. I didn't think I should leave just in case. Then. It happened.  Out of no where walked in the head of the Tennessee Lottery, Ms Rebecca Hargrove. She had a huge check in hand (just like you see on tv) and a crew with balloons followed behind her. She walked straight over to me and asked, "Are you Mrs. Naifeh"? I said, "Yes?" She said, "Congratulations, you sold the WINNING ticket"! 

She asked if I was willing to speak to the press and participate in a live press conference. Of course, I said YES! She said, give us a few minutes to tell the media they are at the wrong location and then we will do it! Our store went from a ghost town to a media circus! 

The BEST thing about all of this....people were really happy! The entire town felt like they were winners. It was a PROUD day for all of Tipton County. Wanna know why our town is so special? These flowers were sent to us from a local small town Florist, Hometown Flowers, as a congratulations! Can it get any sweeter than that? I love my friends at Hometown Flowers. 

The kids had a BLAST taking pics and soaking in the excitement of it all. 

This picture was used on the cover of a zillion papers the next day, I loved it because it was so natural of the kids. They weren't posing, a reporter just caught them taking a selfie with the check! 

I did so many interviews that was surreal how fast your life can change with fame in an instant.