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June 14, 2013

Postal Service expands reach in community

BAILEYTON — From groceries to a full-time pharmacy, Hopper's Family Market in Fairview has become a one-stop shop for customers lately.

On Tuesday, the store added another service, as it officially became a Village Post Office for the United States Postal Service with a ribbon cutting ceremony.

"We've been selling stamps for convenience, but now, in addition, we'll also be selling flat rate boxes, and postage pickup," said owner Jimmie Hopper. "It's a convenience we can offer our customers."

The Village Post Office will serve as an extension to the Baileyton Post Office, which recently reduced its window hours.

"We appreciate the Hopper's partnering with the Post Office,” United States Postal Service Marketing Manager Bridgett Carroll said. “This is going to expand our Post Office access, because chances are when we’re closed, you’ll still be open. This is a trend we’re doing, and we’re here to support you in whatever way we can.”

The Postal Service considers establishing a Village Post Office in locations where there is no Post Office or that has one with reduced operating hours, and where an alternate access site will benefit the community and the Postal Service. Village Post Offices are located inside businesses and other places frequented by USPS consumers, and are operated by the management of those locations.

According to Carroll, Thursday afternoon’s ribbon cutting marked the sixth Village Post Office opening. Earlier in the day, a ribbon cutting was held at Hopper Building Supply in Eva.

“We’re looking to establish more, Carroll said.

Currently there are over 300 nationwide.

Hopper’s is open Monday through Saturday from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. and 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.. on Sunday.

* Ashley Graves can be reached by phone at 734-2131,ext. 225, or by email at agraves@cullmantimes.com

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