Wyoming has unveiled the adorable new face of their impending lottery â€“ YoLo the jackalope.Â YoLo, of mythical origin, made his first official appearance yesterday, in an open house held by the Wyoming Lottery Corporation at their headquarters in downtown Cheyenne.
The whimsical creature is thought to have its origins in from North American folklore and was chosen by officials to reflect the light-hearted, fun nature of playing the lottery. YoLo, whose name is derived from the witty blend and brand name â€˜WyoLottoâ€™, is pictured on a blue background jumping over the letters â€˜yoLoâ€™ while reaching for a star. It is also a popular acronym for the term â€œyou only live onceâ€, which is certainly an appropriate slogan for any new jackpot winner to adopt. Designed by Cheyenne based advertising firm Warehouse Twenty One, YoLo has come to be known affectionately as a â€˜jack-pot-alopeâ€™- a creature perhaps even more elusive than the already allegoricalÂ jackalope. Although the Wyoming Lottery began operation in July 2013, Wyomingites are currently unable to take part in multi-state lotteries. However, the legislation allowing for lotteries to take place in the state is a promising development and one which suggests Wyoming is well on its way to becoming a valued participant of both Mega Millions and Powerball. CEO Clontz said â€weâ€™re optimistic that we could be ready as early as mid-Juneâ€ but added that â€thereâ€™s still a lot to do before we start selling Powerball and Mega Millions tickets.â€
Governor Matt Mead, who first signed the bill in March 2013, seemed less optimistic about the time frame and stated that the board should not act hastily but take the time to â€do things properlyâ€ and estimated an earliest launch date of October 2014.
Despite a vague launch date, chief executive officer of the Wyoming Lottery Corporation Jon Clontz spoke enthusiastically about the development; â€Weâ€™re excited about bringing YoLo to life as we move forward with the Lotteryâ€™s branding processâ€ he said, before adding; â€YoLoâ€™s a distinctly Wyoming character that will become an instantly recognizable symbol of the Lottery.â€
Wyomingâ€™s impending inclusion into the national games of Powerball and Mega Millions means that there will be just six states without a lottery. Â Despite having passed legislation opening the door to a state lottery and inclusion into the national games, there are notable prohibitions, namely instant win games like scratch offs. Nevertheless, the addition of Wyoming to Powerball and Mega Millions shows that America is becoming ever more gripped by the national game. Will the other six states eventually follow? Only time will tell.
Updated January 31st, 2014