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Scratch that itch: Patriots-themed scratch ticket on sale for $5   

  • New England Patriots Chairman and CEO Robert Kraft throws a football into the crowd following a launch of a Patriots New Hampshire Lottery scratch ticket game at the State House in Concord on Tuesday, Aug. 29, 2017. (ELIZABETH FRANTZ / Monitor staff)

  • Gov. Chris Sununu (right) and New England Patriots Chairman and CEO Robert Kraft (left) appear in front of the State House in Concord on Tuesday, Aug. 29, 2017, for the launch of the 2017 Patriots scratch ticket game. (ELIZABETH FRANTZ / Monitor staff)

  • New England Patriots Chairman and CEO Robert Kraft (left) and Gov. Chris Sununu appear in front of the State House in Concord on Tuesday, Aug. 29, 2017, for the launch of the 2017 Patriots scratch ticket game. (ELIZABETH FRANTZ / Monitor staff)

  • New Hampshire Lottery Executive Director Charlie McIntyre talks about the New Hampshire Lottery New England Patriots scratch ticket game at the State House in Concord on Tuesday, Aug. 29, 2017. (ELIZABETH FRANTZ / Monitor staff)

  • New Hampshire Gov. Chris Sununu talks about the new New Hampshire Lottery New England Patriots scratch ticket game at the State House in Concord on Tuesday, Aug. 29, 2017. (ELIZABETH FRANTZ / Monitor staff)

  • New England Patriots Chairman and CEO Robert Kraft (left) looks back towards a group of Merrimack Cardinals youth football players at the State House in Concord on Tuesday, Aug. 29, 2017, during the launch of a New Hampshire Lottery Patriots scratch ticket. New Hampshire Lottery executive director Charlie McIntyre stands at right. (ELIZABETH FRANTZ / Monitor staff)

  • Gov. Chris Sununu is gifted a jersey signed by Tom Brady from New England Patriots Chairman Robert Kraft at the State House for a launch of a Patriots scratch ticket game in Concord on Tuesday, Aug. 29, 2017. (ELIZABETH FRANTZ / Monitor staff)

  • New England Patriots Chairman and CEO Robert Kraft appears in front of the State House for a launch of a Patriots scratch ticket game in Concord on Tuesday, Aug. 29, 2017. (ELIZABETH FRANTZ / Monitor staff)



Monitor staff
Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Lobbing foam footballs from the State House steps and smiling broadly, New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft kicked off the New Hampshire Lottery Commission’s 2017 Patriots scratch ticket game Tuesday.

Flanked by Gov. Chris Sununu and Charlie McIntyre, executive director of the Lottery Commission, Kraft marked the start of the sixth year of the partnership between the state lottery and the football team, which has proved lucrative for both sides.

Kraft said the game has generated more than $26 million in sales and netted $7 million for state education programs.

“Thank you for your great support, and live free or die,” Kraft exclaimed to the crowd. Players and cheerleaders from Merrimack Cardinals youth football filled the background behind the podium.

The scratch tickets, which sell for $5 each, offer cash prizes of up to $100,000 in addition to potential game-day ticket packages, according to the lottery commission. The program is one of a range of games run by the commission, which devotes 25 percent of its revenue to New Hampshire education aid.

A spokeswoman for the commission said projected gross revenue for this year’s game is $6 million, based on past years’ figures. Over a million tickets have been printed and more are expected in the future, the spokeswoman, Maura McCann, said.

The state pays $325,000 to the team annually for Patriots ticket packages and use of the team’s logo, according to McCann.

The $5 scratch tickets went on sale Tuesday and offer the chance to win four $100,000 grand prizes and a series of second-chance drawings to win tickets to Pats games. Other prizes range from $5 to $100.

The late morning launch was accompanied by a mini training camp event, led by Patriots alumni for the 100 local football players in attendance. Twenty-five youth cheerleaders took part in their own event with two Patriots cheerleaders.

But the morning’s eye-catching moment belonged to Kraft, who presented Sununu with a trophy of his own: a signed jersey from Tom Brady, the team’s vaunted quarterback.

“In the spirit of (doing) things for all the citizens of New Hampshire, we know you like to be the best at everything,” Kraft said. “So I wanted to give a gift to the governor for all the people, and this is from the GOAT himself, who signed this,” he added, using the “Greatest of all time” acronym often associated with Brady.

In remarks after the ceremony, Sununu praised Kraft’s franchise for what he called its history of philanthropy.

“This is about partnering with excellence,” he said, describing the state’s arrangement with the team. “To have a partner like (the Patriots) with the state of New Hampshire is just an awesome opportunity for us to not only see what we can do as part of this program, but see where we can take it to the next level.”

(Material from the Associated Press was used in this report.)