Four activities that make winter enjoyable are depicted on four United States stamps to be issued Oct. 23 in New York City.
The stamp designs show ice skating, building a snowman, bird watching and making snow angels.
The stamps will be issued in a double-sided pane of 20 (convertible booklet format).
These stamps, along with the Silver Bells global forever stamp, will debut with an 11 a.m. first-day ceremony at the New York Hilton Midtown, 1335 Avenue of the Americas, during the American Stamp Dealers Association’s National Postage Stamp Show.
Ethel Kessler of Maryland designed the stamps using existing illustrations created by artists Janet Atkinson, Jing Jing Tsong and Christine Roy.
The Postal Service said: “Winter days can be a wonderful time to appreciate the great outdoors with friends and loved ones. Drawing on nostalgic images of snowy childhoods, the Winter Fun stamps can be used not only to convey the joyful spirit of the holiday season and the new year, but also to send cheerful greetings for any occasion all winter long. Each stamp is sure to add a welcome splash of warmth to letters and cards during the year’s coldest months.”
CCL Label printed 400 million of the new Winter Fun forever stamps in double-sided panes of 20.
Two different varieties of press-sheet segments will be made available for the double-sided pane of 20: one with normal die cuts and one without. A total of 1,000 of each will be made available.
Each sheet segment consists of six panes arranged one across by six down and sells for the face value of $58.80.
A standard black ink four-bar first-day cancel will be available for the Winter Fun forever stamps. A digital color first-day postmark will also be offered.
On Oct. 1, the Postal Service issued five stamped envelopes in three different packs of 10 that use the Winter Fun stamp designs showing bird watching and building a snowman, plus three other designs.
The packs of 10 envelopes sell for $9.95 each and include envelope seals showing a red bird perched on a branch in the snow.
Technical details and first-day-cancel ordering information for the Winter Fun forever stamps can be found below.
Nondenominated (49¢) Winter Fun forever stamps
FIRST DAY— Oct. 23, 2014; city— New York, N.Y., and nationwide.
DESIGN: artists— Janet Atkinson (Ice Skating), Jing Jing Tsong (Snowman, Snow Angels), Christine Roy (Bird Watching); designer, typographer and art director— Ethel Kessler, Bethesda, Md.; modeler— CCL Label Inc.; engraver— WRE.
PRINTING: process— gravure; printer and processor— CCL Label Inc., Clinton, S.C.; press— Dia Nippon Kiko; inks— yellow, magenta, cyan, black; paper— nonphosphored type III, overall tagged; gum— self-adhesive; issue quantity— 400 million stamps; format— double-sided pane of 20 (convertible booklet format), from 120-subject cylinders; size— 0.77 inches by 1.05 inches (image); 0.91 inches by 1.19 inches (overall); 5.75 inches by 2.38 inches (full pane); plate numbers— “C” followed by four single digits; marginal markings— plate numbers, “©2014 USPS,” USPS logo, bar code; USPS item No.— 689804.
First-day cancel ordering information
Collectors requesting first-day cancels are encouraged to purchase their own stamps and affix them to envelopes. The first-day cover envelopes should be addressed for return (a removable label may be used), and mailed in a larger envelope addressed to Winter Fun Stamps, Special Events Coordinator, 380 W. 33rd St., Room 4032, New York, NY 10199-9998. Requests for first-day cancels must be postmarked by Dec. 22.
The Postal Service’s uncacheted set of four first-day covers for the Winter Fun stamps is USPS item No. 689816 at $3.72.