CLIVE — A Council Bluffs man has an eye toward paying off student loans, buying a home and investing after he won a $300,000 lottery prize.
“That’s the ultimate goal,” Coletyn Jensen told officials on Monday as he claimed his prize at the Iowa Lottery’s Clive headquarters. “Retiring early would be nice, so if I can get a little jump-start on that, that’d be awesome.”
Jensen, 27, won the fourth top prize in the lottery’s “Win Big” scratch game. He stopped at Jump Start, 109 E. Locust St. in Carter Lake, after a round of golf to redeem an earlier winning ticket, and decided to put his winnings toward a ticket in the $30 scratch game.
He scratched it when he returned to his vehicle. When he uncovered a winning symbol, he scratched to reveal the prize.
“It was kind of surreal,” said Jensen, a grocery store manager. “I started from right to left, and it was like 0-0-0-0-0-3. I was losing my mind. I think I sat there for three or four minutes just looking at it.”
He pulled out his phone and scanned the ticket on the Iowa Lottery mobile app to confirm his win.
“I think I’m still in shock and it’s been two days,” he said. “It’s very surreal, pretty much a life-changing moment.”
Jensen said he had planned to meet friends for dinner that night, but that changed once he scratched off the big prize.
“I had to call and cancel because I had to figure out what I was doing with this ticket,” he said. “But I think the next one’s on me.”
Win Big is a $30 scratch game that features eight top prizes of $300,000, 42 prizes of $30,000 and overall odds of 1 in 2.38. For more information about this game, and the number of prizes still available, visit ialottery.com.