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Jackpot! Ice finally moves in Alaska river

NENANA, Alaska (AP) — Alaska’s favorite spring guessing contest has concluded.

Nenana Ice Classic manager Cherrie Forness (SHAYR-ee for-NESS) says ice on the Tanana (TA-nah-nah) River went out at 1 p.m. Monday.

For contest purposes, that means the official correct guess for winning the annual contest is 12 p.m. Alaska Standard Time.

The jackpot is $267,444. Forness says the number of winning tickets should be known by the end of the week.

The annual guessing contest started in 1916 when surveyors for the Alaska Railroad bet when the ice would go out.

Thousands of people now pay $2.50 per guess. Organizers split proceeds between payouts and Nenana charitable organizations.

The winning time is determined when a cable attached to a tripod on the river ice trips a clock on shore.

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