Social gathering

Ontario Post Office customers enjoy the new bench, which was hand-crafted by Custodian Phil Tallinger.

Customers in Ontario, NY, can now sit down while catching up with neighbors thanks to a new bench just outside Post Office doors.

The bench resulted from discussions following the most recent Postal Pulse survey.

“We were talking about [how neighbors] gather in front, on the sidewalk or in the parking lot to chit chat,” said Postmaster Joseph Lippa. “[The idea] came up about providing them a spot to visit.”

The bench was hand-crafted by Custodian Phil Tallinger, who worked on it for several weeks in between his other duties.

The bench is painted with the American flag’s stars and stripes and pays tribute to the town’s original name: Freetown.

“While we realize the Post Office is a place of business, we also recognize it is the heart of a community where people gather,” said Lippa.