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Jackpot! Happy Winners in Southern California Casinos

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may2010_jackpot3Most of the jackpot winners on these pages had no idea that they would be going home from the casino thousands of dollars richer. Not in their wildest dreams. This month we feature what you have asked for in your e-mails, phone calls and letters, telling us how much you want to see all kinds of jackpots—big, small, on slots, at the tables, for promotions. So here you are—as many jackpots as we could fit on these pages. These lucky—and happy—winners won their jackpots in the past three months. And, yes, we know you want as many details as possible. So we've included a few of the exciting back stories of some of these very lucky jackpot winners. Read on, and visualize yourself one day on these pages—or on one of the most-read pages of this paper, the Winners page.

Winning Machine Called to Player at Fantasy Springs Resort Casino

Frank Paganelli from Joshua Tree went to Fantasy Springs Resort Casino on Sunday, March 21st to watch his friends bowl at Fantasy Lanes. After a few minutes at the lanes, Paganelli wandered into the casino. He walked around for a minute and sat down at a 50-cent IGT Wheel of Fortune® slot machine.

"This one seemed to call to me. I had this weird feeling like I was going to win." Whether his positive attitude moved the slot machine reels or whether he was just extremely lucky, he said he will be living a bit more comfortably now. After playing the machine that beckoned him for only a few minutes with only $5 inserted, the Wheel of Fortune symbols lined up across the center of the screen and signaled that Paganelli won $272,121.95!

"I couldn't believe it. I have never won anything remotely close to this amount of money before. It won't change who I am or what I do, but it sure is nice. I'll pay off my house in Joshua Tree."

Paganelli is a luxury car parts wholesaler who assembles and disassembles autos, spends a lot of time at the gym and at the bowling alley near his house. He's extremely happy he let his friends talk him out of his routine for the day and into going to Fantasy Springs.

Payroll Clerk Gets Big Pay Day at Golden Acorn Casino

Patricia Yanitor won $251,574 when she hit a Wheel of Fortune® quarter MegaJackpot® at Golden Acorn Casino on Sunday, April 4th. Yanitor, a payroll clerk from El Cajon, was at the casino with friends for Easter Brunch. She said she chose the winning machine because she likes the Wheel of Fortune® game.

"I enjoy pushing the Spin button," she said. After playing only $40 in the winning machine, Yanitor said she was surprised to learn she had won the top progressive prize. "I was not sure that I won, and I didn't know what I won!" she said. She said she will put a portion of her winnings in savings and use some to "travel and see the U.S."

Miracle Believer Wins $222,799 Wheel of Fortune® MegaJackpot® at Harrah's Rincon Casino & Resort

Money had been tight since Louise D.'s husband was diagnosed with cancer six years ago. But that didn't stop them from flying from New York to San Diego to spend the weekend with their daughter for her birthday in early March. After checking into the hotel at Harrah's Rincon, Louise decided to look for her favorite slot machine, Wheel of Fortune®. Louise's husband handed her $100 and told her to make it last for the rest of the day. After watching Louise play for a few minutes, her husband told her he was going to play somewhere else, since she never seemed to win when he was around. Louise said good-bye, and when she turned back to the slot, there were three Wheel of Fortune® symbols on her reel slot machine: the 3x, 4x and 5x. "They didn't match, but I was hoping I won at least $1,000," said Louise. "

In fact, Louise won the progressive jackpot worth $222,799.09!

"I believe in miracles," said Louise. "My husband's remission was the first one, and winning $222,799.09 at Harrah's Rincon was the second."

Winning $2,000 or $272,000 has to be a thrill. We hope you get to experience that feeling and get to see your winning photo on our pages. Good luck and have fun at the casino!


As the 2010 Coachella Valley Poker Champion, Larry won $28,000 at Spotlight 29 Casino.

Louise won a $222,799 Wheel of Fortune® jackpot at Harrah’s Rincon Casino & Resort.

Frank won a $272,121 Wheel of Fortune® jackpot at Fantasy Springs Resort Casino.

Patricia won a $251,574 Wheel of Fortune® jackpot at Golden Acorn Casino.


Bao won $50,000 playing $5 Quick Hit at Barona Resort & Casino.


Paul won $26,775 playing $1 Double Diamond® at Casino Pauma.

James won a $4,000 jackpot playing Game King Video Poker at Sycuan Casino.

Jim won $31,623 playing Cleopatra Keno at Valley View Casino.

Barry won $25,000 playing Super Times Pay at Valley View Casino.

Shelia won a $6,025 jackpot playing Stars & Bars at Sycuan Casino.

Terry won two jackpots—$5,258 and $5,874— playing Blazing 7s® at Spotlight 29 Casino .

Violetta won $27,771 playing 5¢ Celebration at Barona Resort & Casino.

Mi won $9,000 playing Double 3x 4x 5x at Harrah’s Rincon Casino & Resort.

David won a $21,600 jackpot playing Twelve Times Pay at Fantasy Springs Resort Casino.

Mary won $5,145 playing 777 Double Jackpot at Valley View Casino.

Andrea won $23,880 playing Queen’s Knight at Sycuan Casino.

Bernard won $10,506 playing Stinkin’ Rich at Harrah’s Rincon Casino & Resort.

Gloria won $9,000 playing Wicked Winning at Sycuan Casino.
Mary won a new scooter in the Spring Fleet Giveaway Promotion at Spotlight 29 Casino.
Erlinda won $10,000 playing $1 Quick Hit at Barona Resort & Casino.

Donald won $10,000 playing Game King Video Poker at Spotlight 29 Casino.

Maria won $10,000 playing $1 2x 10x 5x Bonus Times at Barona Resort & Casino.

Michael won $5,042 playing Double Jackpot 777 Quick Hits at Valley View Casino.

Margaret won $19,799 playing Pot o’ Gold Keno at Fantasy Springs Resort Casino.
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