Writing to Mushers

Hi Boys and Girls,

It sure has been quiet this week with no race to follow. I bet you are finishing activities in you classroom. One thing you may be doing this week is writing a letter to the musher or mushers you followed in the race. I know how exciting this can be. I bet you are hoping for a return letter and maybe some goodies. First thing to remember is that the mushers receive hundreds of letters every year. It takes time for them to go through all of them and then answer. Be patient and realize an answer may come during the summer.

This is a good time to go over some other rules for writing the musher. You will need the mushers’ addresses. Your teacher will need to go to:

http://iditarod.com/edu/writing-to-mushers-must-read/

to apply for these addresses. Addresses will not be given out until a form has been filled out and returned. A note for teachers: If you have already filled out a form and have not gotten a list of addresses yet, they should be arriving soon. No addresses were sent out during the race. Also while you are waiting for address, take a look at the lesson plan provided for classroom use. This is also found out the web address above.

Here are a few other tips when writing your letters:

  • Make sure letters are friendly and supportive
  • Don’t ask too many questions. First read the mushers bio on the Iditarod website and if the musher has a website, check there to see if you can find the answers to your questions. If you can’t, pick only one or two questions to ask.
  • If you hope for a response you MUST send a self addressed stamped envelope with your letter. If your musher lives in another country (ie Canada, Norway, etc.) you must have the correct postage for that country.
  • Don’t ask for booties, autographs, pictures or anything else. All these things cost the musher money to buy and send. It is unreasonable to expect the musher to send out these items. Some of them do, but don’t expect it.
  • Not all mushers allow ITC to give out their contact information.
  • Do Not mail letters to Iditarod Headquarters in Alaska. Mushers do not pick up mail there and chances are they will not receive the letters.

For more tips check at the website above. The most important thing is to have fun and learn how to write a proper letter. I posted a picture of the letter I started. I haven’t edited it yet so I know it’s not correct. Maybe you can look at it and see if you can tell what I still need to do.

See you on the trail,

Gypsy