Oxbow Chase the Ace prizes stayed local

Both the Oxbow Chase the Ace weekly pot and the final jackpot were won by Oxbow residents. The final Oxbow and District Recreation Board’s game draw was made on June 17. 

The board was able to raise about $40,000 since September 2019 and they were pretty happy with how the game went.

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“It was very exciting. It was a fun ending to the game. Both of the winners are right from Oxbow. That’s exciting for local people,” said Oxbow community development officer Tami Scott.

By the final week, there were 26 cards left in the deck, but it only took two tries to catch the ace. 

Phyllis Morrow, whose ticket was drawn first, won over $4,700 but came short of drawing the ace of spades. 

It was the last draw that Oxbow and District Recreation Board could have, so the jackpot had to go that day. Ellie Hook’s ticket was drawn next and she became the winner of the game, and claimed over $23,000 for the jackpot. 

“I was very excited and happy. Never expected it,” Hook said. 

“It just all happened so quickly. Another woman had been drawn first … and when I heard her name drawn, I thought, ‘She is such a nice lady, I’m glad she is winning it.’ And when she didn’t get it, I never guessed that it would be me, so it was lovely.”

Hook’s been participating in the game since the beginning, but she never could foresee winning anything, let alone such a significant prize. 

“I won $500 about 40 years ago, but that was all,” said Hook. 

She was watching the draw live along with her husband, and other family members were following it at their homes, so the phone went ringing immediately when her name was drawn. 

Hook pointed out that “luckily it wasn’t very long” until everybody watching got to know the results, and she also was pretty happy that Ian Scott, who was helping with the game, made the choice for her. 

“I was really glad that he pulled the card because if I had to pull the card and it was the wrong card, I’d had been (blaming) myself. And I wouldn’t have been mad at him if he didn’t pull the right card. But it was a relief that someone else did,” Hook said. 

Going on a good vacation would be her first choice for the winnings if not for the pandemic. And while Hook hasn’t made plans for the winnings yet, she hopes that one day when it’s possible she still will go on a great trip and also share some money with her family. 

She was also very grateful to the organizers of the game. 

“The recreation board that does this, I’d like to compliment them on all the work they did to help with recreation in Oxbow,” Hook said. 

Once the pandemic hit, Oxbow Chase the Ace had to go online, and it turned into great entertainment that drew participants from all across the southeast and from as far away as Yorkton and Prince Albert, allowing the prize to grow significantly. The last game that was aired on Facebook attracted over 1,000 viewers. 

After the final draw, the Oxbow and District Recreation Board came together to decide on their near future plans and also on how the funds will be used. That’s the only fundraiser the board has for now.

“We are not doing anything until the fall, and we’ll be talking about whether or not we’ll be doing another chase the ace and if it will have the same format. Those decisions have yet to be made,” said Scott.

She added that the way they did the last game wasn’t really sustainable especially during the last weeks, when they were overwhelmed with the number of ticket sales. 

“We’ll have to think about other options to do it, but it was fun. It was a great ending.”

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