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Nick Costello of Milford experiences a whirlwind kind of year after winning $1 million Mega Millions prize.
Winner:Jannette Pagan
Claim Date:
Game:PREMIERE PLAY
Prize:$100,000
Retailer:
Grocery Village, Bridgeport
Milford Winner Recounts Whirlwind Year and Appearance on HGTV's "My Lottery Dream Home"It's been a whirlwind kind of year for CT Lottery winner, Nick Costello, 56, of Milford. Last February, Costello purchased two Mega Millions "Quick Pick" tickets for the February 9 drawing. Shortly after the drawing, Costello checked the winning numbers on the Lottery's website and discovered, much to his shock, that one of his tickets contained a five-number match worth $1 million!

If that wasn't enough excitement, a few months later, Costello received a phone call from HGTV to ask if he would appear on "My Lottery Dream Home," hosted by David Bromstad, an interior designer who meets with recent lottery winners to help them find the house of their dreams. Costello, a self-described computer nerd, said yes, and went on to spend four fun-filled days with Bromstad and the HGTV crew in search of the "perfect bachelor pad" close to the water.

"It was a fun experience," Costello told us. "The crew was absolutely great. They were really a nice group of people." When his episode, titled, "IT Geek to Rich and Chic," first aired on “My Lottery Dream Home” in December, Costello said he felt like a bit of a celebrity—he gets recognized for his appearance almost daily. "People are very nice; it's not a problem," Costello said. "They stop to congratulate me. One person even asked if they could take a selfie with me!"

So, what is it really like to be a CT Lottery millionaire? "I still work, but now with a lot less stress," Costello said. "After I won the million dollars, and paid the taxes, of course, I was able to pay off all my debt. It also allowed me to buy a house and a new car, something that I might not have been comfortable enough to buy before."

In a few months, Costello is planning to take a trip to Portugal. In the meantime, Costello still plays the lottery. "I play Mega Millions and Powerball twice each week,” he said. “And I always get the Megaplier and the Power Play!"

For those who missed Costello on “My Lottery Dream Home,” his episode is scheduled to repeat on Jan. 25 at 8 p.m. and again on Jan. 26 at 3 a.m. on HGTV. Tune in and find out which "Dream Home" he ultimately selected!

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