Stamp of Good Fortune

Kam Mak, the artist who created the Year of the Boar artwork.
USPS

Bright pink peach blossoms highlight the 2019 Year of the Boar Forever stamp, the 12th and final stamp in the Celebrating Lunar New Year series. The U.S. Postal Service dedicated the stamps during a first-day-of-issue ceremony at the Chinese Community Center in Houston, TX. The public is asked to share the news of the stamp using the hashtag #LunarNewYear.

“I’m happy to be in Houston to celebrate this occasion,” said Luke Grossmann, USPS vice president of finance and planning. “The Postal Service has long celebrated our nation’s rich heritage through our stamp program. The brilliant design of this stamp helps celebrate the diversity of the American experience.”

Around the world, millions of people welcome a new year with gifts, music and celebration. Individuals born during the Year of the Boar are said to be generous, compassionate and warm-hearted. Diligent and focused, these individuals often have a great sense of responsibility and finish what they start.

Lunar New Year is the most important holiday of the year for many Asian communities. In the United States and elsewhere, the occasion is celebrated in various ways. Parades featuring enormous and vibrantly painted papier-mâché dragons, parties and other special events are common festivities enjoyed on New Year’s Day and in the days that follow. The Lunar New Year is observed primarily by people of Chinese, Korean, Vietnamese, Tibetan and Mongolian heritage.

The boar, also referred to as a pig, is one of 12 zodiac animal signs associated with the Chinese lunar calendar. The 2019 Year of the Boar begins Feb. 5 and ends Jan. 24, 2020.

Peach blossoms, like those depicted in the stamp art, are of particular significance during this time of year. In China, peach trees typically bloom in early February, just in time for the new year, with the striking pink blossoms marking the beginning of spring.

Combining original artwork by Kam Mak with two elements from the previous series of Lunar New Year stamps — Clarence Lee’s intricate cut-paper design of a boar and the Chinese character for “boar” drawn in grass-style calligraphy by Lau Bun — art director Ethel Kessler created a culturally rich stamp design that celebrates the diversity of America.

Introduced in 2008, Celebrating Lunar New Year is the second series honoring the Lunar New Year. The first series ran from 1992 to 2007. The Year of the Boar is being issued as a souvenir sheet of 12 self-adhesive Forever stamps.

Postal Products
Many of this year’s other stamps may be viewed on Facebook or via Twitter. A video of the ceremony is available on Facebook.com/usps.

Customers may purchase stamps and other philatelic products through the Postal Store at usps.com/shop, by calling 800-STAMP24 (800-782-6724), by mail through USA Philatelic, or at Post Office locations nationwide. Forever stamps will always be equal in value to the current First-Class Mail 1-ounce price.

Information on ordering first-day-of-issue postmarks and covers is found at usps.com/shop under “Collectors.”

The Postal Service receives no tax dollars for operating expenses and relies on the sale of postage, products and services to fund its operations.

Photo: Kam Mak, the artist who created the Year of the Boar artwork.