In a plan to keep rural post offices open and save money, the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) intends to shorten the hours open of some, including the .
How do you feel about a reduction in hours at the Old Zionsville Post Office?
According to Ray Daiutolo, Sr., regional spokesperson, the postal service is responding to the needs and wants of the people. Feedback from rural postal customers indicates they would prefer a cut in hours rather than closing the post offices as a cost-cutting measure.
The USPS agreed with the strategy and is in the process of putting it into effect, Daiutolo said. It is hoped that the new hours will be implemented by 2014 following a study, which will include a public meeting to determine the needs and wants of the Old Zionsville community.
The Old Zionsville Post Office began on Jan. 28, 1886 in the Old Zionsville Store, moving to the Miller Hardware Store in 1898, and finally to its present location in 1971. There have been eight postmasters. The current, and ninth, postmaster is Kathy Gallagher, who has been at the location since 2004.
“Kathy is the best post mistress,” said customer Mary Hanzlik. “She knows everyone and always chats a bit. I like coming here.”
Not only do the residents of Old Zionsville use the post office, but people come from Macungie and Emmaus to do business, according to Gallagher. They like the atmosphere and have a much shorter waiting time then at the other sites, she added.
The post office is a social point in the small community. Customers and Gallagher enjoy teasing each other, creating lots of laughter. It is a place where people can share their joys and sorrows with each other.
“This is the best post office,” said customer Brenda Harned. “There’s even toys for the kids while we do our business and chat.”
Old Zionsville Post Office has all the services of other post offices, except they have no home delivery and bulk mail. The two employees assist anywhere from 40 to 100 customers on any given day, with the Christmas season being more toward the 100 mark, said Gallagher.
“We even have curbside service,” chuckled Kathy as she was removing the mail from the curb mailbox and was handed some letters from a car.