1M sign up for 'MI Shot to Win Sweepstakes' to boost COVID vaccinations, state says

Mark Hicks
The Detroit News

More than a million Michigan residents have entered the lottery-style raffle offering residents vaccinated against COVID-19 a chance to win cash prizes from a pot of $5 million and $55,000 scholarships, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer said.

Through Wednesday afternoon, the "MI Shot to Win Sweepstakes" had received 1,093,930 applicants, with 52,311 having signed up for the scholarship drawing, representatives told The Detroit News.

1,001,149 applicants in the grand prizes and 44,966 signed up for the scholarship drawing, state officials said in a statement.

Gov. Whitmer announces the "MI Shot to Win Sweepstakes."

The sweepstakes launched Thursday and runs through Aug. 3. Residents ages 12-17 can win one of nine $55,000 college scholarships. There are 30 daily drawings worth $50,000 for newly vaccinated individuals throughout July.

The first round of winners, including for the $1 million drawing, is scheduled to be announced Monday, state officials said.

“The response by Michiganders to the MI Shot To Win Sweepstakes is outstanding,” Whitmer said Tuesday. “It’s exciting to see so many people signing up for the sweepstakes as they are the best messengers who can encourage their family and friends to get their COVID-19 vaccinations and help answer any questions they have about the process.”  

The effort, a collaboration between Meijer, Michigan Association of United Ways, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan as well as other groups, aims to push more residents to receive vaccinations and achieve the governor's goal of having 70% of the adult population protected.

The money for the initiative comes from leftover federal relief aid for response to the coronavirus. Ohio and other states launched similar efforts in May. 

Through Tuesday, some 62% of Michiganians age 16 and older, or roughly 5 million people, had received their first dose of a COVID-19 vaccination, according to Michigan Department of Health and Human Services data.  

“The results we’re seeing from the July Fourth holiday are impressive," said Protect Michigan Commission director Kerry Ebersole Singh. ”But entering to win isn’t enough. We are asking all Michiganders to call your family and friends today and make sure they know now is the time to get vaccinated in order for a chance to win one of the amazing giveaways.” 

Go to https://www.mishottowin.com/ to register and learn about eligibility for the drawings.

To enter the sweepstakes by phone, call 888-535-6136 (press 1)  8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday-Friday or 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.