US Stamps

USPS to shake things up with four stamps picturing snow globes Sept. 19

Aug 29, 2023, 11 AM

By Charles Snee

On Sept. 19 in Breckenridge, Colo., the United States Postal Service will shake up the holiday mailing season with four forever stamps illustrating snow globes.

In an Aug. 18 press release, the USPS announced that the new nondenominated (66¢) Snow Globes stamps will be issued during a first-day ceremony to be held Tuesday, Sept. 19, at 11 a.m. Mountain Daylight Time at the Stephen C. West Ice Arena, 189 Boreas Pass Road, in Breckenridge.

Participating in the ceremony will be Sheila Holman, vice president of marketing for the Postal Service, as the dedicating official; Harry Rinker, a member of the Postal Service’s Citizens’ Stamp Advisory Committee; and artist Gregory Manchess of Portland, Ore., whose oil paintings appear on the stamps.

Ceremony attendees are encouraged to register online with the USPS.

The indoor arena has plenty of seating, so the Postal Service is allowing each attendee to invite a maximum of 98 additional guests.

As shown on the Postal Service’s preliminary artwork of a block of four, the scenes Manchess painted for the snow globes feature a cheerful snowman wearing a red and white scarf; Santa Claus, his pack of toys slung over his shoulder, about to descend into a chimney; a male deer with an impressive rack of antlers emerging from a tree line; and a decorated Christmas tree, its branches heavily coated with snow.

“Beloved by children and adults alike, snow globes can be miniature works of art, kitschy souvenirs or anything in between,” the Postal Service said.

“Snow globes share common features. A container — made of glass, plastic or other clear material — is filled with liquid that covers a central figure or scene; when shaken, the flitter, the technical term for the ‘snow,’ creates a storm that briefly obscures the inside of the container.”

The new Snow Globes stamps arrive in time for the holiday mailing season, and there will be an abundance of them for collectors and other postal customers to use on greeting cards and other mail.

Ashton Potter (USA) Ltd. of Williamsville, N.Y., printed a total of 550 million Snow Globes stamps in 27.5 million doubled-sided panes of 20, a format the Postal Service calls a booklet because selvage strips on both sides of the pane can be removed to facilitate folding the pane so that it may be carried easily in a purse or wallet.

That convenience aside, collectors prefer to save double-sided panes intact and display them flat in their albums.

In 2022, the USPS issued several religious-themed nondenominated (60¢) forever stamps: Virgin and Child (Scott 5721), Kwanzaa (5737) and Hanukkah (5739). A stamp honoring Eid (5092) was last issued in 2016.

Jim McKean, senior public relations representative for the Postal Service, told Linn’s Stamp News that remaining stocks of 2022 holiday issues are sufficient to meet demand this year.

Manchess worked in tandem with USPS art director Derry Noyes, who designed the Snow Globes stamps.

He shared with Linn’s some fascinating insights that guided him during the design process. Following are questions that Linn’s posed to Manchess and his responses. …

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