By Michael Baadke
It might seem odd to suggest that stamps are tasty, but the latest issue from the United States Postal Service certainly qualifies.
The Soda Fountain Favorites set of five stamps will be issued June 30 in a flat pane of 20 that the Postal Service describes as a booklet.
The five different illustrations by Nancy Stahl feature a double-scoop ice cream cone, an egg cream, a banana split, a root beer float, and a hot fudge sundae.
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The banana split stamp is twice as wide as any of the other four stamps.
USPS art director Ethel Kessler is credited as the designer of the Soda Fountain Favorites.
According to the Postal Service, geometric silver-toned patterns in the selvage and on the booklet cover evoke a classic chrome-accented soda fountain.
The Postal Service has prepared 800 Soda Fountain Favorites press sheets with die cuts, for sale at $75.20 per sheet (160 stamps).
A 3 p.m. first-day ceremony for the stamps will take place at Elliston Place Soda Shop, 2111 Elliston Place, in Nashville, Tenn.
The dedicating official will be Nancy Rettinhouse, USPS vice president of employee resource management.
Though popular in the United States, ice cream isn’t often featured on U.S. stamps. The 32¢ Nancy stamp from the 1995 Comic Strip Classics set (Scott 3000o) and the 32¢ St. Louis World’s Fair stamp from the 1998 Celebrate the Century pane for the 1900s (3182e) are two that show children enjoying ice cream cones.
Technical details and first-day cancel ordering information for the new stamps can be found below.
FIRST DAY— June 30, 2016; city— Nashville, Tenn., and nationwide.
DESIGN: artist and typographer— Nancy Stahl, New York, N.Y.; designer and art director— Ethel Kessler, Bethesda, Md.; modeler— Michelle Finn and Sandra Lane.
PRINTING: process— offset with microprinting; printer and processor— Banknote Corporation of America, Browns Summit, N.C.; press— Alprinta 74; inks— cyan, magenta, yellow, black, Pantone Matching System 7510 gold; paper— phosphor-tagged, overall; gum— self-adhesive; issue quantity— 50 million stamps; format— pane of 20, from 320-subject cylinders; size— 1.68 inches by 1.05 inches (Banana Split image); 0.77 inches by 1.05 inches (other stamps’ images); 1.82 inches by 1.19 inches (Banana Split overall); 0.91 inches by 1.19 inches (other stamps overall); 5.88 inches by 5.43 inches (full pane); 11.11 inches by 23.52 inches (press sheet); plate numbers— “B” followed by five single digits; marginal markings— plate number in peel strip area (stamp side); “©2015 USPS,” USPS logo, promotional text, bar code; USPS item No.— 680804.
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 Soda Fountain Favorites Stamps, Metro Station Post Office, 2245 Rosa L. Parks Blvd., Nashville, TN 37228-9998.
Requests for first-day cancels must be postmarked by Aug. 30.
The Postal Service’s set of five uncacheted first-day covers for the Soda Fountain Favorites stamps is USPS item No. 680816 at $4.55. USPS order numbers for stamps and FDCs also appear in Linn’s 2016 U.S. Stamp Program.