Designs by Terry Boyers of Morley and Allen Thompson of Dexter were chosen as finalists by a panel of experts and are now competing in an online voting contest to be the top five in the state.
On Friday Missouri Lottery announced the finalists of the contest, which solicited $1 Scratchers ticket design ideas from Jan. 2-Feb. 2. The Lottery received 875 entries. Each of the 20 finalists will receive $200 worth of Scratchers tickets.
Now the public will decide the fate of the finalists by voting for their favorite design on the Lottery's Web site. Voters have to be members of the Lottery's online player services group, My Lottery. They can vote once from Feb. 9-17 and once from Feb. 18-26. Once a person votes, the updated results are immediately shown.
Breanne Gibson, Web coordinator for Missouri Lottery, said the design contest is a first for Missouri Lottery.
"We were looking at originality and game format, universal appeal and appropriateness, which are criteria when we create our own tickets here at the Lottery," Gibson said.
Other stipulations were participants could only enter one design, and they had to be 18 and from Missouri.
"We received quite a mix of entries. All abilities and all types were received," Gibson said.
The expert panel that chose the finalists was comprised of people who deal with game development at Missouri Lottery, Gibson said.
"So those whose entries were selected should be very proud," Gibson said. Boyers, 53, called her camping-themed design, "The Great Missouri Outdoors."
"My daughter is a park ranger, and I do stuff outside all the time. We go camping, and I thought I'd do something about camping and canoeing," Boyers said about how she came up with her design.
Boyers said she doesn't have an artistic background; she just used her computer.
"You could use clip art, and that's what I did. I thought it was kind of kind of cool," Boyers said.
Boyers said she learned about the contest when she checked her ticket numbers at the Lottery's Web site and thought she'd give it a try.
Thompson said he also learned about the contest through the Lottery's Web site. He and his girlfriend sent in entries.
"My girlfriend taught me how to do Photoshop, and I came up with the design. I had no idea it would be a finalist," Thompson said.
Thompson's design, which features a cell phone, is called "Calling For Cash."
"I was looking at my cell phone and thought you can call in and get the dollars," Thompson said about how he got his idea.
Thompson, 51, called himself "just a little creative" and said he has no art background.
"I worked on it off and on, and it probably took three or four days to do," Thompson said.
Both Thompson and Boyers said they've encouraged family and friends to vote for them.
"I even called my brother in North Carolina to vote," Boyers said. Those who want to vote can register for free at the Lottery's Web site. All they need is an e-mail address.
As of Tuesday morning, the Lottery's site had received 906 votes since the contest began Friday, Gibson said.
Winning tickets won't actually be turned into a Lottery ticket, Gibson said. "At this point, it's just a chance for them to get that great idea into us, and you never know, it may be something that stands out and could be used in the future," Gibson said.
But the top five winners will receive $500 worth of Scratchers tickets -- something Boyers and Thompson would be happy with.
"If we do win, we'll be doing a lot of scratching," Thompson said.
To vote for or view the final entries, visit Molottery.com