Despite Poor Economy, Fewer Letters To Santa This Year

CHICAGO (WBBM) — The post office calls it “mind-boggling”: Even in a less-than-robust economy, letters to Santa from needy families are down significantly this year.

At Chicago’s main post office on Harrison, Santa’s in-box has about 7,600 letters in it. Chicago Post Office Spokesman Mark Reynolds says last year, Santa got 10,000 to 12,000.

“We aren’t getting as many letters as we got even last year, and we still don’t have a good sense why that is,” said Reynolds. “It’s just one of those weird things that’s been happening.”

Reynolds says he doesn’t think it’s because of the post office rules that require anyone who takes a letter to fill out a form, submit an I.D. and bring the gift to the post office for mailing.

Reynolds says that rule has been in place for a few years now.

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He says the letters that have come in are no less touching, like this one that says: “Anything. Please help me put a smile on my kid’s’ face.”

The post office says “Letters to Santa” will be displayed in the mezzanine of the main post office at 433 W. Harrison St., through Tues., Dec. 21 from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m., Monday through Friday and weekends from 9 a.m.-3 p.m.

Like last year, anyone interested in taking a letter and answering it must sign a release and then bring the gift back to the post office for mailing.

  • JeanSC

    Could it also be because Santa doesn’t care about grownups, just kids – and there are many adults who could use serious help from Santa (e.g. A JOB) but know they’ll just be ignored?

  • Sue

    Used to get 3 letters every year. But now am no where near able to pick up letters. Live in Western Suburbs. They used to be mailed to me. My other family members would do this too. We would enjoy being Santa. Hope the rules on being helpful to others changes.

  • Tessea

    If the post office sorts the Santa letter by zip code – why can’t they distribute the letters to the zip code or at least a post office close to the particular zip code. Most people can’t get downtown to pick a letter but could get to a post office close to their home. When my daughter was little, we spent one Saturday every holiday season buying gifts for a child less fortunate… at that time, I worked downtown, so it was easier for me. I would continue this tradition, if only the letters were closer.

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