Local News

Not-so-jolly economy changes tone of Santa letters

Posted December 17, 2008 6:39 p.m. EST
Updated December 17, 2008 6:52 p.m. EST

— It is the season that inspires letters to Santa Claus about toys, dolls and video games. This year, however, Saint Nicholas is reading letters that are a sign of tough economic times.

Five million pieces of mail pass thorough the U.S. Postal Service Distribution Center in Raleigh every day. This time of the year, the North Pole sub-station is a hot destination, with 4,000 letters so far being sent to Santa.

Santa's helpers are helping him read the letters and say this year, it is not just about fun items. Some letters ask Santa for a jacket, shoes and a job for mom.

“Instead of the toys, we have more of the ones that will touch your heart a little bit,” said Sherry McGowan, with the U.S. Postal Service.

One letter addressed to Santa reads, “We have seen our mother crying because she cannot give us anything. It hurts us we have to see her like this."

“I’m writing this letter to you for a miracle,” another Santa letter says.

For many children, 2008 has been a tough year.

“I think with the economy the way it is, it has brought our children into the adult world and our finances,” Santa helper Donna Crawford said.

The postal service says it is not too late to send a letter to Santa, but you have to hurry.

Send letters to:

North Pole Sub-Station

P.O. Box 9995

Raleigh, N.C. 27676-9995

Also, remember to include your mailing address so Santa can write back.