What’s The Longest City Name In The U.S.?

Update: January 2018 – We were informed that there is a new longest town name in America. The official name is “Village of Grosse Pointe Shores, A Michigan City” making the name 48 characters long including spaces! We might suggest that this new super-long city name be truncated to “Grosse Pointe Shores” as both the City itself and the USPS seem to use this shorter version. Funny thing, entering the complete official name in the USPS Zip Code lookup tool causes the USPS tool to fail. 🙂 For those in a city planning capacity, we might recommend that you work to keep your new city names to less than 22 characters.

Update: June 2019 – We were also informed of a city in Missouri called “Bellefontaine Neighbors” which would be the next longest city name after the one mentioned above.

Original Post…

That’s an interesting question, but why should we care?

Well, you got me there; as there isn’t a big reason to care. However I discovered this information years ago, and when you’re in the mailing business it’s sometimes handy to know these little oddities.

For instance, this might come in handy if you are building a CITY field in a database, or maybe testing some new addressing software. You might also want to know this if you are using MS Word to create a mail merge onto a small postcard.

You see, if you know the longest city name in the U.S., you can put your addressing software to the test and impress your colleagues at lunch. 😉

Some might say the longest U.S. city name is Truth or Consequences located in New Mexico, however, the longest, at 22 characters including spaces, is Rancho Santa Margarita, California. And with a population of around 50,000, it counts as a bona fide city.

Rancho Santa Margarita map

If you are creating your own mailings, you might want to scribble this down somewhere so you can make sure your database and mail merge programs can handle it.

On the other hand, if you use LetterStream, you can trust that we’ve already figured this one out, as well as many other peculiarities relating to mail.

 

The Adventures Of The LetterStream Pen

LetterStream Pen at Grand Canyon
The LetterStream Pen at the Grand Canyon

Here’s a fun habit we’ve fallen into at the office. Whenever someone travels to a unique destination, they take a LetterStream pen along for a quick photo to be sent on a postcard. Our collection of postcards grows with pictures of the LetterStream pen at the Grand Canyon, Niagara Falls, Puerto Rico, the Las Vegas strip and more. You can find some of these pictures on our Instagram account.

If you want to join the fun and capture pictures of the LetterStream pen in unique locations, simply ask for one next time you’re talking with any of our team members, or pick one up at our booth at the CAI trade show we attend each year.

Email us your pen picture–or better yet mail it on a postcard and we’ll consider adding it to our Instagram account or website. No Photoshop allowed! 😉

Here are some of the many destinations the LetterStream pen has visited thus far…

"Tech Support": Another Funny Video

This Domtar video is so true.

It really doesn’t have anything to do with mail… but it does leave us asking the question; are we using sustainability as the rationale to do irrational things?

Tell me this hasn’t happened to you.

If you’re interested in real paper mail, contact LetterStream for solutions in Certified MailFirst-Class, and non-profit mail.

Last Minute Christmas Postcards

LetterStream Christmas postcardRunning a little behind this Holiday? Aren’t we all. But here’s a way to get your Christmas greetings out the door quickly.

Granted, we are known for our industrial grade automated mailing solutions, but one of our products makes sending fun, full-color postcards a breeze.

All you need is a picture and the addresses of those you want to send the postcard to. Wow, this sure is going to be a short blog post.

It’s funny because you could probably create your Christmas postcards in less time than it took me to write this short little post.

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Want more info? Our postcards are printed in full-color, full-bleed (printing all the way to the edge of the postcard/no white margins). The postcard is 5 1/2″ x 8 5/8″ printed on heavy card stock paper.

Nearly any size image will work as our cropping tool will help you fit the photo to our postcard. If the image is too small, we will give you a warning, but most pictures from today’s modern smartphones should work just fine.

There’s room for another image on the address side of the postcard as well, or you could leave a white space if you aren’t feeling creative or are pressed for time. On the other hand, you can type out some well wishes and save them as a .jpg file. You might even want to put a colorful, festive background behind your holiday greeting to add more color to your message.

I recommend making the address-side image roughly square as that is the area available to you. Again, our cropping tool will help you crop the image so that it fits the message area.

I guess I should talk briefly about addressing your postcards. You can enter the addresses one at a time into your private online address book (which will make sending next year’s greetings even faster), or you could upload a .csv file to get all your addresses loaded in a snap.

Once your job is complete, we take your postcards to the Post Office and mail them via USPS First-Class mail. There’s nothing else you need to do!

Ok, we’ve taken enough of your precious holiday time. Get started, find that great holiday photo and your mailing list, and get those postcards in the mail.

***For the month of December, all postcards created on our website before noon Arizona time (MST) will mail that same day.

New LifeShow Slideshow. (Say That 10 Times Fast)

LetterStream lobby slideshowWe’ve found an innovative way to show off photos and display our logo in our company lobby. Since the price of a mounted flat panel HDTV was less than a custom made sign, we decided to opt for technology and electronics over old-fashioned plastic cut-out letters. Turns out the technology is pretty amazing, especially when combined with LifeShow.

We created a slide show of various pictures of certified mail, registered mail, trays of mail, post office locations, blue collection boxes and a host of other mailing related products with our logo intermixed. Then, via LifeShow we have shared the slideshow on Google+, Facebook and most importantly the flat panel in the LetterStream lobby.

The craziest part!? We are even able to share it in this post!

Use your arrow keys to scroll through our collection of mail related photos (you might need to click on the image first to get it rolling).

You can now pretend you are sitting in the leather overstuffed chairs in our lobby, listening to our peaceful background music, knowing that behind the lobby wall, we are printing and mailing your letters, documents and postcards for you.

If you have fun photos of mail that you’d be willing to share, send them our way and maybe they’ll make it on our slideshow!

"Office": A Funny Video From Domtar

We stumbled across this hilarious video from our paper manufacturer the other day.

It doesn’t have much to do with mail, but it points out some of the silliness of cutting too much paper out of your workplace diet.

Domtar has a whole series of videos titled “PaperBecause“. This little beauty is #112.

Check out the entire series at www.paperbecause.com.

If you’re interested in real paper mail, contact LetterStream for solutions in Certified Mail, First-Class, and non-profit mail.

Give Stars – Get Starbucks

starbucks logoWhile we’d love to take you out for a cup of coffee and get some feedback on how we’re doing, we realize this might get a little impractical.

However, we have devised a way to buy you a cup of coffee for your feedback. It’s not quite the same as a sit down chat, but please know we will value it as much as a face-to-face meeting. Here’s how it works….

1. Go to your favorite business review site (Google+, Insider Pages, or another of your choice).

2. Give us a 5-star rating (if for whatever reason you can’t give us 5-stars, contact us immediately, and we’ll make it right).

3. Add some glowing comments.

4. Send us a message via our Contact page with a link to your review and your mailing address.

5. We will send you a thank you letter and a $5.00 Starbucks gift card*.

If you ever feel like you aren’t getting stellar service from LetterStream, simply call us and ask to talk to the President. He will always take the time to speak with you and work to improve our service.

*Limited to current customers only, one card per customer. Offer ends Sept. 30, 2013.

Follow @LetterStream On Instagram!

LetterStream photos on InstagramHey all you #hashtag #instagrammers!

Over the years we’ve collected a lot of fun #photos of mail and related items, and we thought… why not share them with the world on Instagram?

If you aren’t familiar with Instagram, it’s a great way to share cool photos with friends and family… and the world. You can get the app for iPhone and Android phones alike. If you don’t want to install the app to share your own pictures, you can still use Instagram just with your computer. Go to instagram.com/letterstream to find our pictures, or click on the new Instagram button at the top right of this page.

Anyway, check out @letterstream or #letterstream on your Instagram app, or visit the website above.

When you take a cool picture of a post office box, USPS stamp, mail box, blue collection box, certified mail envelope or any other mail-related item, tag it with @letterstream to let us know!

Baja 500 Update – Class 11 Car #1162 – "PepeAzul"

20130601_094657

Wow, time flies (as did PepeAzul, the class 11 VW we sponsored running in the Baja 500); I didn’t have time to get a post out telling you I decided to join Chris, Greg and the rest of the PepeAzul team on their journey to Ensenada Mexico for the 45th running of the Baja 500.

Running the Baja is an amazing experience, especially if you like adventuring outside the US, in a 40+ year old car with a 62 horsepower motor with no windows or A/C, traveling on roads that most people wouldn’t dare travel on even in a 4-wheel drive truck.

Turns out we had a top notch team and were surprised to discover that two of our team members were retired USPS employees, go figure!  That meant we were prepared for rain or snow or high water and were determined to get there on time.

The entire event was a rush of excitement from the safety inspection (which was basically a huge parade and photo opportunity for the cars and team) to the race, to retrieving the car which was stuck near the top of a 1500 ft jagged rock hill.

I rode along side Chris from mile marker 95 to 230, bouncing, bumping through 135 miles of the rugged Baja Peninsula.

PepeAzul finally decided he could go no further at mile marker 255, slightly past the half way point.

I’m sure, due to the speed we were traveling, few could make out the LetterStream logo positioned on the hood of Pepe, but we do have operators standing by to pick up all those new customers who were exposed.