Besler wins $300,000 in scratch game

Marissa Besler of Monticello won $300,000 from a $30 scratch-off ticket she purchased at Great Pastimes in Monticello. Besler plans to pay off her mortgage and car with her winnings. (Photo submitted)

     A Jones County woman plans to pay for both her mortgage and her car after winning a $300,000 lottery prize.

     “To not have to worry about a mortgage or a car payment is a huge weight off my shoulders,” Marissa Besler told officials as she claimed her “Colossal Crossword” scratch prize at lottery headquarters in Clive.

     Besler, 34, of Monticello, bought her winning ticket at Great Pastimes, 228 N. Main St. in Monticello. She scratched the ticket at home while waiting on a load of laundry.

     She said she was shocked when she realized she’d won the second top prize in the game.

     “I think I wandered around my house for about an hour, kind of catching my breath,” she said. “I downloaded the Iowa Lottery app on my phone and then was able to scan the ticket and it verified that I was thinking. I was even more in disbelief!”

     Besler, an occupational therapist assistant, and she told family members about her win, but waited until she claimed her prize at lottery headquarters before telling anyone else.

     “I haven’t really told anybody outside of my family yet,” she said. “I was waiting until today to make exactly sure.”

     Colossal Crossword is a $30 scratch game that features overall odds of 1 in 2.29. For more information about this game, and the number of prizes still available, visit


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