Dear Santa: Shelby County Museum offers Santa letter mailbox

Published 1:05 pm Monday, December 11, 2023

By NOAH WORTHAM | Staff Writer

COLUMBIANA – Several children have already mailed their letters to Santa Claus thanks to a special mailbox provided by the Shelby County Museum and Archives in Columbiana.

A small, festive display is currently located in front of the Shelby County Museum and Archives at the end of Columbiana Main Street where children can come and deposit their letters to send to the North Pole.

“It’s fun when I come around the corner and I leave my office and there’s a family in front of the mailbox and they’re doing pictures and they’re dropping letters,” said Jennifer Maier, executive director of the Shelby County Museum and Archives.

The display and mailbox are the brainchild of Maier who wanted to provide another source for Christmas cheer and magic.

“The mailbox was an idea I had earlier this year to try and bring a little Christmas magic to Columbiana and allow children the experience of dropping in that letter to Santa and knowing that we are safely going to get it to the North Pole for them for Santa to read,” Maier said.

The mailbox was also made possible thanks to the support of State Rep. Corley Ellis and Central State Bank as well as Shelby County Historical Society Boardmember Cinday Harmon-Manwaring and her husband Chandler.

The festive display also compliments the city’s Christmas in Columbiana events that occur each Friday—providing residents a chance to enjoy the Christmas festivities while also delivering mail to Santa.

“I certainly feel that Columbiana has really stepped up the holiday activities over the past couple of years, especially with events every Friday night,” Maier said. “it just really makes Columbiana special and we hope that by adding this in front of the museum, it would add one extra thing for people to come and enjoy when they’re here in town.”

The display will continue to be available until the new year and the mailbox will be available for children to deliver letters to the North Pole until Christmas Eve.

“My goal and what I hope is the kids that are dropping in letters today will return years down the road with their own children,” Maier said. “ I want this tradition to go on for years and (that) kids know this is where you go to mail your letter to Santa.”

The museum is located at 1854 Old Courthouse Circle in Columbiana and is open Tuesday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.