Prepare To Be Awed By Claude, Illinois Lottery’s New Mascot

Written By Derek Helling on December 2, 2020 - Last Updated on April 6, 2021

You might never have thought about a hamster enjoying a candlelight dinner or a visiting miniature Chicago skyline. Thanks to the new Illinois Lottery mascot — a hamster named Claude — these such imageries are gifts that keep on giving.

The IL Lottery has set up Claude with a website so viewers can watch Claude do, well, hamster-y things. There are numerous tie-ins to the lottery’s products, but this new star of the rodent family is the main attraction.

Meet Claude, the Illinois Lottery mascot

Like a costumed hero who appears from nowhere to save the day in the knick of time, not much is clear about Claude’s backstory. It doesn’t matter, though; the 2020 holiday season is better off, regardless.

Visitors who watch Claude can “gift” him with a number of items. Clicking on each item will bring up a separate video of Claude reacting to the new stimuli in his cage.

Besides lottery scratch-off tickets of various denominations, the selection of short, on-demand videos includes Claude’s introduction to:

  • Candlelit dinner
  • Cheese puffs
  • Chicago skyline
  • Coconut
  • Holiday stocking
  • Mistletoe
  • Ornaments
  • Poetry
  • Tilt-A-Hamster ride
  • TV set

There are also five mystery gift videos from which to choose. If you watch all 13 interactions, the site grants you access to five bonus videos.

Viewers can also choose the music to set to Claude’s livestream. There are 10 options encompassing a wide array of musical genres. Thus, the possibilities are nearly endless.

If you’ve never watched a hamster run in his wheel while heavy metal music plays, this is your chance. You seriously don’t know what you’ve been missing until you do so.

It’s not all about making Claude the happiest hamster in the Prairie State, however. You can also share in the spoils of the season yourself.

IL Lottery promos on Claude’s website

As part of the partnership with Claude, the hospitable hamster gives visitors two ways to win. On a daily basis, you can register for a chance to win $25 worth of holiday instant-win tickets from the Illinois Lottery.

That contest expires on Dec. 31. Until then and beyond, however, there are other ways to engage with the lottery over the web. They can be much more lucrative, too.

The Illinois Lottery offers online sales of some of its games, including the popular multi-state lottery titles Mega Millions and Powerball. IL residents can buy draws on the lottery website, the Android app or the iOS app.

Claude delivers on his mission to brighten the holidays for many Illinoisans. For that, he deserves all the treats. We have the IL Lottery to thank for introducing us to this merry mesocricetus auratus.

Photo by Illinois Lottery screenshot
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Derek Helling

Derek Helling is a lead writer for PlayUSA and the manager of BetHer. He is a 2013 graduate of the University of Iowa and covers the intersections of sports with business and the law.

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