It’s back! The Edmonton Oilers Community Foundation announced Wednesday it will bring back its online 50/50 raffle for the Stanley Cup Final.
The 50/50 draw will be open to everyone located in Alberta who is 18 or older. Tickets sales will open at 9 a.m. and end at 8 p.m. on each game day of the Stanley Cup Final.
The online 50/50 became wildly popular at the beginning of the NHL playoffs, when it was open during Edmonton Oilers games. The largest jackpot was more than $14 million — half of which was awarded to the ticket winner; the other half of the jackpot went to the EOCF.
While popular, the 50/50 was not without issues. The draw for the final Aug. 7 50/50 jackpot — which ended up being a whopping $14.1 million — was delayed by three weeks.
Issues with the Aug. 7 draw caused some fans to end up with multiple purchases. A number of fans told Global News they ended up with tickets even though the site crashed before a confirmation screen appeared.
On Aug. 10, the Oilers announced it would be offering refunds. The three-week delay to draw the winner was due to delays in processing all of the refunds, according to the Edmonton Oilers Community Foundation.
David Dean, who bought 50/50 tickets during the first round of the playoffs, said he is still waiting for a $50 refund, but added his credit card company is now dealing with it.
Dean said he will not be buying any more tickets and doesn’t think other people should either. He said the entire process was “too much of a headache and the follow up was terrible.”
While Dean said it is unfortunate for the charities that could get a huge payday, he said the integrity of the draw was a red flag and he hopes people support local charities in other ways.
Jason Theiss is a long-time Oilers supporter who loves the fact they have a foundation that gives back to the community. He bought about $220 worth of tickets the last time around, but said he won’t be buying in this time.
“I’m actually surprised that they’re wanting to go forward with another draw,” he said.
He said the lack of communication from the foundation between the time the draw was delayed and the time the winning ticket was drawn was extremely frustrating.
“I feel like the community foundation and the process of what happened has kind of lost its integrity for me,” he said. “It was a big disappointment.
“I will not be participating in this draw or future draws with the community foundation. I just do not believe that the integrity is there and there’s no guarantee that the same problem is not going to persist in the future.”
Heather Holmen with Alberta Liquor, Gaming and Cannabis said while the Aug. 7 raffle situation was “not ideal and understandably frustrating for ticket holders,” it was important that the EOCF take the time needed to rectify the situation before the draw took place.
“AGLC continues to review the Aug. 7 raffle, as part of its compliance audit, to ensure it was conducted in accordance with Alberta’s gaming legislation, regulation and policy. We have and will remain in continuous communication with the EOCF to ensure that any future raffles are conducted in line with Alberta’s raffle licensing policies.”
Holmen said lessons were learned from the Aug. 7 raffle and AGLC will continue to provide oversight and guidance to the EOCF during future raffles.
Fans who want to take part in the 50/50 can go onto the Edmonton Oilers website and select from the following four ticket pack options:
- Regular: $5 for one ticket
- Discount 1: $10 for 10 tickets
- Discount 2: $20 for 60 tickets
- Discount 3: $50 for 200 tickets
The EOCF said the winning ticket number will be drawn at approximately 8:30 p.m. on the day of the raffle and will be posted online no later than 6 p.m. the next day.
Tim Shipton with the Edmonton Oilers said a number of modifications and enhancements have been made to the online purchase page. Those who buy tickets will be required to acknowledge they have read and agree to the official rules and that all sales are fine.
“Refunds will not be provided for any reason,” Shipton said in a statement. “If the customer makes a mistake in the amount of tickets purchased, the amount cannot be refunded. All tickets purchased and entered into the draw cannot be refunded.”
Stanley Cup contenders yet to be determined
The Stanley Cup Finals are being played at Rogers Place in downtown Edmonton.
The Dallas Stars have already advanced to the finals. Former Edmonton Oiler Jordan Eberle scored for the New York Islanders in overtime Tuesday night to force Game 6 between New York and the Tampa Bay Lighting. Both teams are vying for the title of Eastern Conference champions.
Tampa Bay leads the series 3-2. Game 6 is scheduled for Thursday night.
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