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January 21
1914 - Signal newspaper owner-editor Scott Newhall born in San Francisco [story]


Operation Santa launches Dec. 4 to spread holiday goodwill letters to Santa Claus available for public to adopt and answer.

“For generations, writing a letter to Santa Claus has been a tradition during the holidays, and for some kindhearted folks, answering those letters has also been a holiday custom for the past century,” according to a news release.

Back in 1912, Postmaster General Frank Hitchcock first authorized postal employees and local citizens to respond to the many letters written to Santa. The holiday goodwill program, known as Operation Santa, has changed over the years but continues to make wishes come true. In the 1940’s, mail volume for Santa grew so much that the Postal Service invited local businesses and charitable organizations to participate.

operationsantaPersons interested in answering a “Dear Santa letter” can visit the Operation Santa location at the Sierra Coastal District office, 28201 Franklin Pkwy., Santa Clarita CA 91383 on Dec. 4, 9, 11, 16 and 18;  from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Today, over a hundred years later, handwritten letters containing dreams and wishes still arrive at the Post Office addressed to Santa Claus, according to a news release. Although current privacy and security regulations prevent personal information contained in the letters, such as a last name and address, being provided to the public, the program continues on in many locations with the Postal Service stepping in as middle man.

“Businesses and corporations, charitable groups and individual citizens can adopt letters from children or families who may need some extra help this year,” said Post Office officials.

Personal information in the letters is redacted by USPS staff and those who adopt letters make a return trip to the Post Office to mail the letter or package and pay the postage. USPS staff applies the name and address and gets it delivered, according to a news release.

For Operation Santa information call 661-775-6731.

Photo identification must be presented to adopt a letter, according to a news release. Participants will be provided a copy of the Santa letter of their choice, which is coded and has had personal information removed.

When they return to mail a gift letter or package, the Postal Service will match the coded photocopy Santa letter with the original and apply the name and address to the item.

 

– Kimberly Beers

 

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1 Comment

  1. An excellent online resource for tips for volunteering for the USPS Letters to Santa program is Be An Elf — the website is http://www.BeAnElf.org It gives quick access to a list of the 20 postal branches participating this year around the US, in case anyone wants to share it on Facebook with friends in other cities. It also has some great tips for volunteering for the wonderful USPS program. Check it out. Twitter is @HowToBeAnElf I’m glad to Be An Elf!

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LOCAL NEWS HEADLINES
Friday, Jan 19, 2018
Jan. 22: Filming in Valencia Prompts Street Closures
On Monday, January 22, 2018, traffic on McBean Parkway, between Magic Mountain Parkway and Valencia Boulevard, will experience delays intermittently between 8:30 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. due to filming involving a Cessna airplane that will land at Valencia Country Club. It is anticipated there will be fewer than five brief closures throughout the day and each will last for approximately two to five minutes.
Friday, Jan 19, 2018
Monroy Sentenced to 21 Years for 2016 Newhall Murder
Joseph Wayne Monroy, a South Gate man charged with the murder of a Newhall man in January 2016, pleaded guilty to involuntary manslaughter in Los Angeles Superior Court today, and was sentenced to 21 years in prison.
Friday, Jan 19, 2018
Brown Expands High-Speed Rail Exec Team to Move Project Forward
Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. has appointed Joseph Hedges to the position of Chief Operating Officer and Pamela Mizukami as Chief Deputy Director of the California High-Speed Rail Authority.
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1914 - Signal newspaper owner-editor Scott Newhall born in San Francisco [story]
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Jan. 22: Filming in Valencia Prompts Street Closures
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Kevin Young has been selected as the California Institute of the Arts (CalArts) 2018 Katie Jacobson Writer-in-Residence. Young will conduct workshops with CalArts students in the MFA Creative Writing Program and present public readings, which will be held at CalArts on Feb. 15 at 7:00 p.m. and at REDCAT in Downtown Los Angeles on Feb. 16 at 8:30 p.m.
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