West Virginia Governor Offers Custom Shotguns and Shotguns as Prizes in Vaccine Lottery

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Shoot his shot! West Virginia governor offers custom shotguns and shotguns as prizes in state’s COVID-19 vaccine lottery

  • Governor Jim Justice announced prizes for the first draw on Tuesday
  • Prizes for the first draw include $1 million, custom F-150 trucks and gun
  • Full four-year scholarship at West Virginia University is also included
  • Anyone in West Virginia who has had their first injection is eligible
  • The draws start on June 20th and will be held weekly until August 4th

West Virginia plans to give away custom shotguns and shotguns as part of a raffle to convince unwilling residents to get vaccinated against COVID-19.

Governor Jim Justice on Tuesday released the full list of prizes for the state’s first vaccine raffle, which will include a $1 million top prize and a slew of other incentives for vaccinated residents.

The first draw will take place on Father’s Day, June 20, and more will be drawn weekly until August 4.

To be eligible, residents of The Mountain State must have received at least one dose of an approved COVID vaccine prior to the draw date.

West Virginia Governor Jim Justice released the full list of prizes on Tuesday for the state's first vaccine raffle, with a $1 million top prize, as well as weapons in the draw.

West Virginia Governor Jim Justice released the full list of prizes on Tuesday for the state’s first vaccine raffle, with a $1 million top prize, as well as weapons in the draw.

Gun shop owner Chad Mercer in West Virginia can be seen in a file photo.  Raffle prizes for getting vaccinated in West Virginia include custom shotguns and shotguns

Gun store owner Chad Mercer in West Virginia can be seen in a file photo. Raffle prizes for getting vaccinated in West Virginia include custom shotguns and shotguns

“There are so many wonderful prizes you can win, it will blow your mind,” Justice, a Republican, said at the raffle announcement last week.

“We’re going to make some West Virginian millionaires before this is over. Some people will win trucks and grants and so on, but we have to get you vaccinated first,” he said.

The list of prizes for the first draw includes:

  • One $1 Million Prize
  • Two full four-year scholarships to a West Virginia institution (must be 12-25 years old)
  • Two custom F-150 trucks
  • 25 Weekend Getaways to West Virginia State Parks
  • Five lifetime hunting and fishing licenses
  • Five custom shotguns
  • Five custom shotguns

Hunting is extremely popular in West Virginia, generating hundreds of millions annually for the state’s economy, much of which benefits small rural communities.

Last week, Justice brought his English Bulldog, Babydog, to his briefing and said Babydog will serve as the mascot of the vaccination-boosting lottery program

Last week, Justice brought his English Bulldog, Babydog, to his briefing and said Babydog will serve as the mascot of the vaccination-boosting lottery program

Early in the vaccine rollout, West Virginia led the nation, a success attributed to the state’s reliance on local mom-and-pop pharmacies trusted in their communities.

But over time, West Virginia has fallen behind a number of other states in terms of vaccination coverage.

According to state data, 51 percent of West Virginia residents have received at least one dose of coronavirus vaccine, and 41 percent are fully vaccinated.

That’s still slightly above the national average, but Governor Justice hopes the state-funded vaccine lottery will encourage people to take the chance.

First lady Jill Biden and actress Jennifer Garner, right, speak with people being vaccinated against COVID-19 at Capitol High School in Charleston, West Virginia, last month

First lady Jill Biden and actress Jennifer Garner, right, speak to people who have been vaccinated against COVID-19 at Capitol High School in Charleston, West Virginia, last month

“Not only will a lot of people win all kinds of great things, but by getting you vaccinated it will protect your life and it will protect your family and friends all around you,” Justice said of the lottery.

The slogan of the program is ‘Save a life; change your life.’

The date of the first prize draw, June 20, also marks the 158th anniversary of West Virginia’s admission to the Union as a new state.

Last week Justice brought his English Bulldog, Babydog, to his briefing and said that Babydog will serve as the mascot of the vaccination incentive lottery program.

“If you don’t want to do it for me, if you don’t want to do it for your family, get vaccinated for Babydog,” Justice said. “She’s so eager to get you vaccinated.”

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