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Restaurant workers mistakenly celebrate Powerball win after reading wrong numbers

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A group of workers at a New Jersey restaurant were left devastated after mistakenly reading the wrong numbers on their office pool Powerball ticket believing, for a brief moment, they had won the jackpot.

Employees at Grissini Restaurant in Englewood Cliffs began celebrating after thinking they had matched all five white numbers and the red Powerball number from Saturday night’s drawing. With no winners from the previous Wednesday draw the massive prize had reached US$950 million.

Video of the heartbreaking scene showed employees hugging and jumping for joy as the numbers were being read.

But it was not to be.

The owner of the restaurant Anthony DelGatto admitted that while he felt bad for his employees he was happy no one ended up quitting.

“I’m sure I would have lost all the employees,” DelGatto told CBS. “The dishwashers were very happy — they didn’t have to wash dishes anymore. Our valet parker told a guy to go get his own car.”

The restaurant has been having fun with the mix-up and employees have made a number of media appearances. On the restaurant’s Facebook page they compared it to Steve Harvey crowning the wrong winner at the Miss Universe Pageant.

The Powerball eventually grew into an unprecedented US$1.6 billion and on Wednesday it was announced the massive windfall will be split three ways. The winning tickets were bought in Florida, Tennessee and a Los Angeles suburb.

A group of workers at a New Jersey restaurant were left devastated after mistakenly reading the wrong numbers on their office pool Powerball ticket believing, for a brief moment, they had won the jackpot.

Restaurant Staff Buys Winning $900 Million Powerball Ticket for the Wrong Day

Hear that? It’s the crushing agony of defeat.

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Powerball is on the tip of everyone’s tongue right now, with the current jackpot of the nationwide lottery currently standing at a staggering $1 billion. While the average person is actually 246 times more likely to be struck by lightning than actually win the jackpot, it’s still fun to dream — unless, of course, you’re one of the New Jersey restaurant employees who mistakenly thought they won over the weekend.

According to NBC New York, staff at Grissini, an Italian restaurant in Englewood Cliffs, N.J., purchased Powerball tickets for last Saturday’s drawing for an office pool, when the jackpot was an only slightly less impressive sum of $900 million. The staff gathered around as one worker read off the winning numbers — 2, 11, 47, 62, 63, 17 — erupting into screams of joy when it was a perfect match for their ticket.

One even reportedly quit his job after realizing he was about to be a multimillionaire. But what the poor employees didn’t realize was that they in fact were referencing the winning numbers from Wednesday’s $528 million drawing, for which no winning tickets were sold.

$900 million sure would be nice, but so would a recent prize offered by the California state lottery: An 18-course dinner at Thomas Keller’s vaunted fine-dining destination The French Laundry. And even if your ticket turns out to be a loser, everyone who plays a particular scratch-off in New Hampshire is a winner, because the ticket itself has a scratch-and-sniff bacon aroma.

Watch the workers freak out when they think they’ve struck gold, below:

Is super expensive food really worth it? This $120 cheesesteak sure is

Hear that? It's the crushing agony of defeat. ]]>