Among the letters arriving at the Tracy Post Office on Monday, Dec. 16, was a straightforward postcard in a child’s handwriting from a girl who was asking Santa for princess-themed toys:
“I would like princess dolls, princess cash register, princess Leap Frog and Doc McStuffins stuff, Love Ximena.”
“It feels good to see these cards,” Mabalot said, holding a handful of letters addressed to Santa on Monday inside the Ninth Street post office.
“It’s a tradition,” he said. “It’s nice to know we still have kids that believe in Santa Claus.”
Approaching Dec. 25, Mabalot said the number of letters addressed to Santa at the North Pole would steadily increase.
Tracy Postmaster Joe Tualla said the post office had been receiving 20 to 30 letters daily. He said some were handed to postal clerks at the counter, while others were found in the outgoing mail.
Sending a letter to the North Pole costs 46 cents, but with or without a stamp, each card or envelope will make its way to Santa.
“We don’t even care if they have postage,” Tualla said.
When the letters arrive at the Tracy post office, Mabalot said, they are placed on his desk, and he sends them to the Sacramento post office for processing.
“I already sent a large envelope to Sacramento (today),” he said Monday.
Although he has been tempted to open a letter or two to see what the children want for Christmas, Mabalot said that job is the responsibility of Sacramento’s main postal station employees at 2000 Royal Oaks Drive.
After the Santa letters arrive in Sacramento, they are opened, copied and logged onto a list to be sent to Santa’s helpers, who help make the child authors’ Christmas wishes come true.
Mabalot said the postcard from Ximena was an example of a typical
Santa letter, but postal workers have seen some letters written on scraps of paper and the occasional letter with pages of toy requests.
Santa letters started arriving at the Tracy post office last week, he said, and they usually continue arriving until Christmas.
“It feels good to see these cards,” he said. “We will make sure they are delivered before Christmas so Santa and his elves can get the toys shipped from the North Pole.”
• Contact Denise Ellen Rizzo at 830-4225 or firstname.lastname@example.org.