Kelowna Man Wins $1M Slot Jackpot In 20 Minutes

Written By Robyn McNeil on September 2, 2022
Group of friends of mixed gender in their 20s and 30s playing slot machines ina dark casino. A man celebrates a win while sitting at a machine and two women look on

The world can change in the blink of an eye or evolve slowly over a lifetime.

But for Joshua Alexander, all it took was 20 minutes.

The Kelowna, BC, man gambled $5.25 on a Powerbucks slot machine and walked away with a cool $1,032,361.83 jackpot. Remarkably, he’d only been at the casino for 20 minutes when the winning play hit.

Alexander was playing on a Powerbucks progressive slot machine at the BC casino with his girlfriend looking on when the win bells started ringing.

“[My girlfriend] started freaking out, and I thought it was a prank or something,” he told BCLC. “My cousin thought I broke the machine.”

“It was a restless night for us after we came home; our minds were blown,” he added.

Dad’s desire for a casino trip prompted winning visit

Alexander told BCLC the lucky night started when his father decided he wanted to go to the casino.

So, Alexander, his girlfriend and his cousin headed off to indulge in local casino entertainment at Playtime Casino Kelowna. Less than 30 minutes after they arrived, he was more than a million dollars richer.

The slot Alexander chose is one of two Powerbucks-linked slot machines in the casino. The cabinets offer players the chance of bonuses, cash wins and the progressive jackpot. Notably, the prize starts at $1 million, growing as players place bets at participating Canadian casinos.

Alexander plans to use some of the prize money to visit bucket list vacation destinations, including Mexico, Australia and California.

Surrey, BC, resident wins $1.1M on Powerbucks slot

Alexander isn’t the only lucky Powerbucks winner of late, either. But for Shelley Araki, the big win took a little longer.

Araki was near the end of her night at Elements Casino Surrey when her last few spins landed her the $1,157,664.03 jackpot.

Araki erroneously believed she had won $100. And, similar to Alexander, thought something was wrong when the prize numbers continued climbing.

“I looked up and saw it had hit the jackpot,” Araki said. “I didn’t believe it at first, I kept thinking, ‘Really? Is this happening to me?'”

With her retirement coming, the timing of her big win couldn’t be better.

Araki plans to spend more time with her family and contribute to her grandchildren’s future with the funds. Years ago, Araki dreamed of winning the lottery. Of her real-life win, Araki said:

“It’s a dream come true. It’s life-changing. I’ve worked hard my whole life, and now I don’t have to worry.”

Photo by Massimo Fusaro, Shutterstock / PlayCanada
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Robyn McNeil

Robyn McNeil is a Nova Scotia-based writer and editor. She lives in Halifax in an empty nest with a mischievous cat and a penchant for good stories, strong tea, cheeseburgers, yoga, graveyards, hammocks, gardening, games, herb, and hoppy beer.

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