Rachel Paige
December 14, 2015 8:13 am

Ever wondered where all those letters addressed to Santa Claus go?

The answer: Indiana.

The North Pole has not magically moved to Indiana, but there is a town there by the name of Santa Claus. Depending on how you address your letter to Santa, and if your own town doesn’t have a Santa’s Workshop satellite location, that “Dear Santa” letter makes its way to Santa Claus, Indiana, about two hours South of Indianapolis (and in my mind, right next door to Pawnee). And the best part? Every letter sent gets a response.

The letters to Santa tradition started all the way back in 1914, when Santa Claus’ postmaster realized that there was an influx of Santa letters in his town. The idea that these letters were going unanswered upset him, so, he started writing back. Over time, others began helping him reply to these letters, and today, the post office Santa and his elves respond to over 15,000 letters a year.

“They come from all over the world,” Emily Thompson, director of the Santa Claus Museum and Village, told CBS News. “We get quite a few international letters — several thousand.”

Using over 400,000 stamps, Thompson explained that every child (… or adult) who writes in gets a personalized letter back. The letter just has to be received before December 21st for a reply.

“It’s a gift in many ways to be able to read these letters — to read these sweet messages,” Thompson said. “We help Santa and keep the belief going to contribute to the magic of the season.”

For Santa Claus, the magic of the season doesn’t span from just December 1st through 25th. The town is also home to a theme park (Holiday World), Santa’s Candy Castle, and a 22-foot tall Santa. Which is conveniently located right next to the post office.

(Image via Shutterstock)

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