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Lawrence and Douglas County

Lawrence and Douglas county

Post office party will end earlier for tax filers

Cutbacks mean postmarks will stop at 7 p.m. on April 17

April 12, 2006

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A Lawrence tradition celebrating the last-minute mailing of income taxes at the downtown post office will continue this year, but things will be different.

"It's going to change significantly," said Steve Mason, one of the members of the Alferd Packer Memorial String Band, which on Monday night will mark its 19th year of performing at the tax night party.

The obvious difference this year is that tax night will be April 17, because the traditional April 15 tax deadline is on a Saturday.

And unlike past years when the Lawrence post office at 645 Vt. stayed open until midnight postmarking and collecting envelopes headed for the Internal Revenue Service, this year it will close at 7 p.m.

The early closing is necessary because during the past two years the U.S. Postal Service has cut back on working hours on tax nights across the nation, Lawrence Postmaster Judy Raney said.

"We kind of got a special exemption last year," Raney said.

Last year's tax party was taped by a TV news crew preparing a segment on the event for "CBS Sunday Morning." Correspondent Bill Geist reported on the event.


Matt Kirby of the Alferd Packer Memorial String Band dances to the delight of taxpayers last year at the post office, 645 Vt. The band's traditional midnight rendition of the "William Tell Overture" will be heard a few hours earlier this year because of post office staffing changes.

Matt Kirby of the Alferd Packer Memorial String Band dances to the delight of taxpayers last year at the post office, 645 Vt. The band's traditional midnight rendition of the "William Tell Overture" will be heard a few hours earlier this year because of post office staffing changes.

But while the post office will close earlier than past years' tax nights, the lobby will stay open and the Packer band will perform.

"They are still more than welcome to be here in the lobby," Raney said. "We'd be happy to have them."

So the band noted for its novelty songs and acts will play on.

"Oh, sure, we're going to do our thing," band member Matt Kirby said, adding that a change was sort of expected. "We had already talked about doing it anyway."

The band also is noted for playing the "William Tell Overture" during the last few minutes leading up to the midnight tax deadline. A crowd of onlookers forms a gauntlet from the door to the mail slots for the last-minute filers to run through.

This year the band will start playing early, about 6:45 p.m., Mason said. About four minutes before 7 p.m. it will begin the musical countdown to the deadline, he said.

Details about Monday night's event were still being worked out because Mason and Kirby said that they had been unable to find out what the post office's plans were until Tuesday.

"Now that we have confirmation, things will start falling into place," Mason said, adding that the band probably would play until 9 p.m.

Anyone wanting to get their taxes postmarked and mailed will have to do so before 7 p.m., Raney said. After that, while the lobby will remain open, there will be no retail service and no mail collection by employees.

Comments

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 8 years, 4 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

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MyName 8 years, 4 months ago

Wow! Suuuper Pundit got struck down! He's not as all powerful as I thought! All I need is to find a way to get the SysAdmin to join the Progress Hating Liberal Agenda...hmmm........

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roadkill 8 years, 4 months ago

Well, I wonder if there will be any roadkill this year. Maybe some sizzlin' barnyard fowl that the fox left behind. Orrrrr---some fire-in-the-hole roadkill stew. I have not been notified about such goings on. The wild greens are up as we speak or write or what is it we are doing?????

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ksmtgirl 8 years, 4 months ago

I love Lawrence, KS! It's my hometown and this kind of quirky community gathering is just another wonderful way to express our town's creativity. Cheers to everyone who can embrace the humor and joy of this event.

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wysiwyg69 8 years, 4 months ago

Grow up and pay your taxes on time . I have thought this was a waste of tme and money anyway. They should stop post marking the taxes at the normal hours of the post office.

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