WITH Christmas just days away, one Leeton shire resident has 10,000 extra reasons to smile.
Throughout spring, Brian Hogan was entering a competition running in The Irrigator called the Spring Cash Code, organised by parent company ACM.
Each week a new spring cash code was published in print and online across 66 of ACM's regional publications, including The Irrigator.
The competition was open to both print and online readers, with Mr Hogan often both of those, such is his love for catching up on what is happening across Leeton shire.
However, while he was entering, he didn't expect to win, but that is exactly what happened.
"I actually got a phone call and at first I wondered if it might be a scam, but it wasn't," Mr Hogan said.
"I couldn't believe it. It's come at a really great time with Christmas and I've had a few health problems recently.
"It's really fantastic."
It does mean a lot and we'll certainly be putting the money to good use- Brian Hogan
Mr Hogan, who has spent many years in Leeton after growing up on a farm at Barellan, plans to spend the money on his family, as well as a holiday.
During his working life, Mr Hogan has had a go at everything. He held a management position at Leeton Soldiers Club, took up a position at JBS Australia's Yanco feedlot, as well as driving trucks locally for farmers and Southern Cotton.
Hard work is in his blood, so to win an extra $10,000 simply by reading the newspaper is an added bonus for Mr Hogan and his family.
"The shortest day I've ever worked is 12 hours," he joked.
Mr Hogan said he enjoyed reading The Irrigator, as well as other papers in the region for both the news and sport content.
"I used to play a lot of sport back in my day ... I played a lot of cricket, I've got good memories playing in the O'Farrell Cup, I opened the batting for Leeton for many years," he said.
"We had the best team in the Riverina. I enjoy catching up on what's happening around town.
"I definitely didn't expect to win, it's just something I decided to enter while I was sitting around not doing a whole lot. It's that old saying of 'you have to be in it to win it'.
"I just want to say thank you, it does mean a lot and we'll certainly be putting the money to good use."
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