It's no secret that lottery sales spike when there are enormous jackpots, like last week's 320 million dollar Powerball jackpot. But the biggest money-maker for the lottery, by far, is the multitude of scratch-off instant games.

Judy Drucker, the public relations manager for the New Jersey Lottery, says more than half of the state's revenues are generated from those instant games - which last year, was almost half a billion dollars.

So why are the games so popular?

She says, "We have a very broad assortment of instant games that people love to play - we've got our core games like the Crossword and the Hundred Million Dollar Spectacular; we have wonderful poker type games that people enjoy playing, there's a wide selection of different games…And there's also a flexibility of price-range- we have instant games that range in price from a dollar up to 10 dollars…It's always a lot of fun to play, and people like to sit around and scratch off the games."

Drucker says she's heard that people in some towns are banding together and having scratch-off parties.

"They sit around and they have a community type relationship - they're talking, they're having fun, they're joking, and they're scratching off instant game tickets…Not only is the lottery giving people a means of having fun and enjoyment, it's creating a community experience."

She adds if you have questions about odds and prizes, "you can just go to the website…Just go to the instant games section, there are pictures of all the different instant games that we offer."

Drucker stresses the revenue that is generated through the ticket sales "is then given back to the state of New Jersey - in the form of a contribution. And last year, the New Jersey Lottery contributed back to the state 950 million dollars and what that represents is funding for all sorts of educational institutions, colleges, universities, grants for tuition. It also goes to our disabled veterans…So it's a vital means of supporting all sorts of very important programs throughout our state."