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McHenry VFW Queen of Hearts pot grows to $2.3M

Jackpot tips over $2.3M

The McHenry VFW Queen of Hearts pot has grown to over $2.3M. Brittany Keeperman –
The McHenry VFW Queen of Hearts pot has grown to over $2.3M. Brittany Keeperman –

Sixteen cards remain on McHenry VFW Post 4600’s Queen of Hearts board after the pot rolled over Tuesday.

Between 600 and 700 people crowded the bar, seating room and outdoor area Tuesday night in hopes of walking away the grand prize winner. The pot has grown to more than $2.3 million. The organization made about $250,000 in ticket sales this week, said Dwane Lungren, the chapter’s commander.

The card picked Tuesday was number 28, which was the five of clubs. Numbers 13, 18, 20, 25, 29, 30, 35, 36, 38, 39, 40, 44, 49, 51, 53 and 54 remain.

The winner will take home 60 percent of the jackpot minus 33 percent which must go to state and federal taxes. The remaining 40 percent will be split – 20 percent to the VFW and 20 percent to start the next pot.

John Palmieri, of Fox Lake, said he has been coming to the event for the past month.

“It’s been very interesting,” he said. “And I support the VFW and what they are doing. It’s wonderful.”

Palmieri said he usually only buys about $10 in tickets but plans to continue to take his chances with the weekly game.

Plus, the pizza is good, he said.

Recent McHenry transplant Karen Crombie said she has played Queen of Hearts raffles before at the Woodstock Moose Lodge and wanted to try her hand at the local game.

“I was up here and it was convenient to come,” she said. “So I figured why not get tickets.”

The parking area was about full shortly after 
7 p.m. Tuesday night as the crowd packed in. The lot can only hold about 120 to
140 cars and another couple of hundred can fit in the grassy areas. Parking is available across the street as well, Lungren said.

“I think we have worked out most of the bumps,” Lungren said. “I think the only problem we do have is the drop-off of the tickets so we need to figure out a solution for that. … People are trying to buy tickets, people are trying to drop off tickets. It has a bottleneck up there.”

Queen of Hearts drawings take place 8 p.m. Tuesdays at the McHenry VFW, 3002 Route 120.

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