In an effort to prevent fraudulent tickets from ending up in the Queen of Hearts drum, the McHenry Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 4600 is selling new types of tickets.
The VFW now is selling tickets with seven numeric digits instead of six. The drum also will be filled with tickets in a multitude of colors.
“It’s to prevent fraud,” VFW Cmdr. Dwane Lungren said while adding that the color of tickets sold will change each day. “We’ve had solid evidence that there were people buying their own and dropping them in.”
On Thursday, white tickets were available.
“We’ll keep rotating the colors, but we won’t say what color until we start selling that color,” he said. Lungren said the VFW also keeps a log of which tickets were sold so he easily can determine where a ticket was purchased.
A drawdown will take place at 8 p.m. Tuesday, meaning tickets will be picked until one bears the number of the envelope containing the queen of hearts.
The remaining numbers are 20, 25, 30, 36, 40, 51 and 54. The pot stands at $7,080,528.
When the queen of hearts is chosen, the winner will earn 60 percent of the pot, which would be about $2.8 million after state and federal taxes.
On Thursday, the area was filled with motorists hoping to buy tickets. Left turns into the VFW from eastbound Route 120 were prohibited. McHenry police helped manage traffic.
Police will close the entrance to the main parking lot, 3002 Route 120, at 8 p.m. each night through Sunday.
Area businesses also are benefiting.
“[Customers] come in and say ‘We’ve never been in this establishment; it’s beautiful,’ ” said Jennifer Guasta, owner of Windhill Pancake Parlor, 3307 W. Elm St. “They come from the Queen of Hearts. ... It’s all during the week.”