"I feel like I have a bag of money": $500k lottery winner excited to enjoy retirement

Apr 8 2023, 2:25 pm

What would you do if you won $30 in the lottery?

Most of us would probably put it towards groceries but others would use it to buy lottery tickets.

That’s exactly what one lottery player did and it was a decision that paid off big time — half a million dollars to be exact.

Carmela Pacenza is a mother and grandmother who lives in Stoney  Creek, Ontario. She said that she had purchased a Bigger Spin ticket and won $30. So she decided to use part of those winnings to buy another Instant Bigger Spin ticket.

“When it landed on Bigger Spin, I asked the clerk what that meant, and she told me I won big and it was a minimum prize of $500,000,” she recalled. “I was shocked! I couldn’t keep a thought in my head — I knew this was going to be life-changing.”

Pacenza said that going to the OLG Prize Centre in downtown Toronto was a surreal experience, as was the chance to spin the massive Bigger Spin Wheel.


“When I saw it land on $500,000, I hugged my family and celebrated with them,” she said. “This whole experience has been fantastic.”

Now with an extra half a million dollars in her bank account, Pacenza said that she’s ready to enjoy life on her terms.

“It’s a wash of calm. I feel like I have a bag of money,” she said, laughing.

She added that she’ll be putting her money towards investments for “a nice retirement.”

So how does she plan to celebrate her big win?

“I’m thinking about a family trip to celebrate together,” she said.

Pacenza purchased her winning ticket was at Fortinos on Upper Centennial Parkway in Stoney Creek.

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