SAN JOSE -- Call it the $324 million question of the day.
Who is San Jose's newest multi-millionaire and what will that person do with all that money?
One of two winning tickets in Tuesday's Mega Millions lottery drawing was purchased in San Jose, lottery officials confirmed Tuesday night. The winning ticket in the $648 million drawing -- with numbers 8, 14, 17, 20, 39 and a mega number of 7 -- was sold at Jenny's Gift Shop at 1818 Tully Road, according to California Lottery spokesman Russ Lopez.
Lopez said the two winning tickets -- the second was sold in Atlanta -- are worth $324 million. If the San Jose winner chooses a lump sum payout, the winnings will be $173 million before taxes. The Georgia winner, Ira Curry, is taking a lump sum of $123 million after taxes, Georgia Lottery chief executive Debbie Alford said. She must pay federal and state taxes. In California, there is no state tax on lottery winnings.
Owner Thuy Nguyen arrived at his lucky store just before 8:30 a.m. Wednesday and was greeted by a throng of cameras and cheers from neighboring store owners.
"I'm so excited," said Nguyen, who bought the store four months ago. "I feel so happy."
Mona Sanders, a lottery official, presented Nguyen with a giant check for $1 million -- his share for selling the winning ticket. He'll get the real check by the end of January,
"That way he can pay Uncle Sam next year," said Sanders, sales manager for the lottery's East Bay district office.
But so far there has been no sign of the person who purchased the ticket. Nguyen said there's a 30 percent chance he knows the person. He said a "lot" of people bought tickets at his store.
Whatever that number is, it will likely increase, said John Reading, an official with the California a Lottery.
"This will be considered the lucky store and people will come from no telling how far to purchase tickets at this store," Reading said.
Reading and another state lottery official arrived at Jenny's Gift & Kids Wear just before 8 a.m. to congratulate the shop owner and deliver a sign which reads, "Millionaire made here. Are you next?"
Reading confirmed the owner of the winning ticket has not yet stepped forward.
"Some people wait a while and get their ducks in a row," Reading said. "Others come right away ready for that money."
Mega Millions sales in California hit $28.5 million just on Tuesday, with 31,000 tickets sold every minute during the last hour leading up to the drawing.
Social media was buzzing late Tuesday night as people wondered who bought the lucky ticket in San Jose.
Store owner Nguyen got the news shortly afterward.
"The lottery called me and let me know (that the winning ticket was sold here), so then when I came and take a look, everybody (was) here, and whoa!" Nguyen said Tuesday night with a huge grin, jumping deliriously around the parking lot before heading out to celebrate.
Nguyen added with a laugh: "I am so happy, I feel good."
Mel Cruz, a security guard at the strip mall that includes Jenny's Gift Shop, said he had bought 15 tickets from the store where the winning ticket was sold but had only a few numbers.
But he remained optimistic.
"I bought two tickets for my girlfriend that she hasn't looked at," he said. "I told her to hold on to them -- don't lose your numbers! I said, 'If you win, you gotta give me something.' She said, 'I'd buy you a coffee, but just one.'"
Peter Lai, 28, who owns a pho restaurant in the same strip mall, said people often congregate in the courtyard to "chill" and play the lottery.
"They'll hang out, go in and buy a scratcher, come out and scratch it," he said.
He added that he is excited for his shopkeeper neighbor.
"He was like 'Man, I wish I had some money, I would remodel this place.'"
Hai Nguyen, not related to the shopkeeper, said be played last week but not this time.
He said that some of the shopkeepers pool their money to play, and maybe there will be a group winner.
"They take their money and put it together in one big pot for tickets."
The jackpot was believed to be the second-highest in U.S. history. A March 2012 jackpot hit $656 million.
Two other states have yet to report if any winning tickets were sold, but in the San Diego County area, two tickets that matched five of the six numbers were also sold.
"This is a big deal," Lopez said. "We are excited when anybody wins money, but this is just huge."
Mega Millions changed its rules in October to help increase the jackpots by lowering the odds of winning the top prize. That means the chances of winning the jackpot are now about 1 in 259 million. It used to be about 1 in 176 million, nearly the same odds of winning a Powerball jackpot.
The Mega Millions revamp comes about two years after Powerball changed some of its game rules and increased the price of a ticket to $2 and added $1 million and $2 million secondary prizes. Mega Millions remains $1, and an extra $1 option has been expanded to allow up to $5 million as a secondary prize.
The Mega Millions lottery is available in 43 states and the District of Columbia.
The Associated Press contributed to this report. Follow Katie Nelson at Twitter.com/katienelson210.