Single father pleads for extension on $67K Oilers 50/50 prize deadline
Clayton Hinkey is desperate for an exception to be made, after finding out he had the winning Oilers 50/50 ticket two days too late.
Hinkey, a single dad, took his four-year-old son Roscoe to the Edmonton Oilers game on Sunday night against the Buffalo Sabres as a birthday present.
As he does every time he watches the Oilers, Hinkey went to try his luck on the 50/50 tickets.
“I bought my ticket really early and I talked to the fellow that was selling them for quite a bit, actually. I said, ‘I probably won’t make it through to the third period with him along, can you get them after the game now with the electronic ones?’ and he goes, ‘Oh yeah, yeah you can actually.'”
Roscoe started to get antsy in the first intermission, and three minutes into the second period — knowing they had a two-hour drive home to Sedgewick, Alta., ahead of them, they left Rogers Place.
Hinkey put Roscoe to bed and forgot about the tickets — until Thursday around 4 p.m.
“So I looked today and holy man I got it! I had to call somebody else over to look at it cause I couldn’t even believe it! So then I got all pumped up and I was looking for emails or phone numbers of who you get a hold of.”
The prize? $67,000.
Hinkey said he called the Edmonton Oilers Community Foundation and left a message. But the phone call he got back was crushing. He’d surpassed the 48-hour window to claim the ticket.
“Somebody got back to me within half an hour I guess — from the foundation — and she said it was 48 hours,” Hinkey explained. “I didn’t even think twice, I just, I knew we could do it later. It never even dawned on me that it would be 48 hours, I was thinking, you know, lottery tickets kind of thing.”
He said he was then directed to the Alberta Liquor and Gaming Commission, but they didn’t have anyone available so late in the day who could answer his questions definitively.
“It was like a long day at work and then I’m like, ‘Holy man I won this’ and then I was pretty pumped up and then it was a crushing defeat after that.”
Soon after, he began to fear his 50/50 pot may be rolled over into Thursday night’s lottery — as the Oilers played the St. Louis Blues.
So he took to Facebook, asking the Oilers to save the money for him. His post went viral within hours.
He said he needs the money urgently and would use it to pay off his taxes.
“Literally on Tuesday, while I should have been looking at this ticket in my pocket, I was wondering how I was going to pay my property tax because I didn’t have $4,500.”
The online 50/50 winners list had no name listed next to Sunday night’s jackpot Thursday night.
On Friday morning, the Edmonton Oilers Community Foundation said it was working with the AGLC on the issues.
“We’re just in the process of gathering information with AGLC. Once we have gone through that due diligence, we’ll be in a position to comment,” a statement from the Edmonton Oilers Community Foundation stated.
In January 2015, the Edmonton Oilers changed the way 50/50 jackpots are claimed. Winners now have until 4 p.m., two business days after the game to claim their prize. Before January 2015, ticket winners had 10 minutes from the time the number was called at the game to claim their prize.
— With files from Phil Heidenreich
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