Writing to Mushers? READ THIS

We are happy to provide you with contact information of mushers agreeing to receive letters from students.  If you are writing to mushers, please follow the instructions below- EVEN if you have done this project before please read the information again- to gain optimum success on your project. Read the information below, follow the directions and the guidelines, send the required information to us, and you’ll receive by email, postal contact information for mushers who agree to receive letters from students. 

Please note: 

  • We do not release email information for mushers.  We do not release any contact information directly to students.  We only send contact information to educators who are needing the contact information for educational purposes.
  •  We are grateful to those mushers who  do respond to student mail.  However, please remember that mushers are very busy people and some letters of response may not arrive until May, June, or even over the summer months.
  • Not all mushers will respond.  We do not guarantee response or a time frame for those who do respond.  Prepare your students for this.  This is your educational project for students. 
  • Following our guidelines may lead to greater success with  your educational project.  Thanks for your patience!

1.  Read or review this lesson plan. Follow instructions. Click to view the UPDATED information teachers must read before sending letters to mushers.

* Please Note:  Each year’s musher contact list is updated in December or January because mushers can sign up for the race until the end of the November.  We do NOT know who all of our mushers will be until that time. We will not send out the ‘new’ contact list until January.  Also, not all mushers allow us to give out their postal information.  Please use an updated list EACH YEAR to make sure you are writing to the correct list of mushers and that you are writing to mushers who agree to get letters from students. Thanks for your patience!

2. Fill out the form on the bottom of this page with information that is requested. The best way to do this is to copy and paste the table or questions into a new document or an email, answer the questions, and then send the information back to us.  

3. Once the education department has received the form and the information requested on it, the addresses for the mushers will be emailed to you. We WILL NOT send  contact information to teachers who do not submit the required information to us nor will we send updated contact lists until after the close of musher sign ups which is December.   If you make the request for addresses between late Feb. through the race, you may experience a delay in our reply to you because our focus will be on the race.  We’ll get back to you in late March or early April.  Thanks!

4. Students should choose the mushers they’d like to write to and create well written letters that ask good questions and  wish mushers success.

5. Place the letter(s) to each musher in a separate envelope. Along with your letter(s), include a self-addressed-stamped-envelope if you would like to receive a reply. Remember to make sure the self-addressed-stamped-envelope has the correct postage – if you expect a musher to send a letter from Canada or overseas to you or your school, you’ll need to talk to the post office about the exact postage you’ll need to include on your SASE. Remember, mushers in countries other than your own will need more postage to send you a letter.

6. Once your letter(s), and the SASE are inside of your envelope, address the correspondence to the musher, using the address list that was sent to you.

7. Remember to put correct postage on the envelope! You’ll need more postage if you are sending a letter to another country! Your post office will tell you what your options are as far as how quickly the letter will get to the musher, depending on how much postage you put on the envelope.  REMEMBER if the musher is from CANADA you cannot use United States postage on the return envelopes.  Mushers must return mail using CANADIAN POSTAGE. You can purchase International Reply Coupons to include in the musher’s letter so a musher from Canada or other countries outside of the United States can exchange the coupon for correct postage.   To learn more, consult this link.

8. Take the correspondence to the post office, or drop it in the mail box once you have correct postage. Send the envelopes directly to the musher. If you are sending letters to multiple mushers, you’ll have multiple pieces of correspondence to send! (Do not send the letters to Iditarod Headquarters or to me to mail them for you.  Send the mail from your location.)

****** DO NOT send mail to Iditarod Headquarters.  Mushers do not get their mail at Headquarters and there is not a budget allowance for postage to purchase envelopes or mail letters for you.  Sending pages and pages of letters in one envelope to Headquarters will not reach the destination.  Contact me for specific information about this or if you have other questions.   Click here.

******Not all of our mushers write back, but many will.  Make SURE you include a self addressed envelope WITH ACCURATE postage on the envelope with the letter to increase the success of this project.  DO NOT send an envelope filled with pages of letters to Iditarod Headquarters or to me to have them delivered or mailed.  We do not have volunteers or postage to do this.  Remember, mushers can get hundreds of letters.  Following our directions is very important!  We cannot guarantee which mushers will write back.  This is a musher’s decision based on many factors including whether you have included a self addressed stamped envelope.  In addition, response letters may take months to arrive, some arrive over the summer.  Thanks for being patient and helping your students remember these important details.

*****The information in the chart below is the information we request from you before I send you musher addresses.  This information is also in the lesson plan that we request you read even if you have read it before or if you have done this project before because our information is designed to help you be successful.  Copy and paste this form into an email or provide the information by simply give this information in your reply email.  Following these directions helps the mushers stay happy and find more enjoyment in returning letters to students.

(If you cannot copy and paste this chart into an email with your information filled out, simply email the required information without the form.)

PLEASE NOTE: The musher contact information is updated mid January following the December musher sign up deadline.  If you request a list before January, you will need to contact us again if you wish an updated list.

To Receive Musher Addresses:  Fill out the following Information in a reply email. Type the information in the answer box.
Teacher’s First and Last Name  
Teacher’s school email address  
School  
School Address  
City, State, Zip code  
School Phone Number  
School or District Website  
Grade Level  
Teaching Area  
Summary of Project and reason for the request.  Include goal or objectives of doing this project.  
I agree to include self addressed stamped for the correct amount of postage envelopes in each envelope sent just in case a musher wishes to send a response letter. (Type your name to show you agree to follow this and other guidelines)
How long have you used Iditarod as a tool in classroom instruction?  
What would you like us to know about you or your students?  

 

Thanks for your cooperation!  Past cooperation and the following the guidelines has seen a growth in the number of mushers willing to participate in writing responses to the letters they’ve received and has improved the number of mushers willing to participate in this project.  Please, please, please remember the self addressed stamped envelopes!  Be patient waiting for potential responses from mushers. There is no guarantee mushers will write back, buy many do.  Letters may arrive over the summer months if not duing late spring. Thanks!