Scouting for mail

Neither rain nor wind nor gloom of night could stay roughly 200 Boy Scouts, their leaders and others from their annual Barefoot Mailman Hike in South Florida.

As fate would have it, rain, wind and gloom of night were part of the equation this year, but the scouts soldiered on.

The February hike is a 35-mile, two-day event that pays homage to Florida’s “barefoot mailmen” of the 19th century.

These intrepid souls (there were roughly 15) handled the first U.S. Mail route between Palm Beach and Miami — then a roadless expanse — from 1885 to 1892. Carriers had to deliver barefoot on the beach, using rowboats to cross the inlets that connected the various locales.

A round trip was 136 miles — 56 by boat, 80 by foot — and took six days.

The journey was rife with perils. James Hamilton, the third and most famous of the barefoot brigade, disappeared from the route in 1887.

This year’s hike began in Pompano Beach, with scouts carrying actual letters. These were stamped with a special pictorial postmark at the end of the hike in Miami’s South Beach.

The postmark is available through April 5.

To obtain one, address a card or letter to yourself or another recipient, affix a stamp and place it in a larger envelope. Affix the appropriate postage to the larger envelope and address that to: Barefoot Mailman Station, Postmaster, 2200 NW 72nd Ave., Suite 514, Miami, FL, 33152-9998.

‘Beloved’ writer

The Postal Service will release its Toni Morrison stamp on March 7.

Morrison (1931-2019) was the rare author who achieved both critical success and bestseller status.

Some of her best-known novels include “The Bluest Eye,” “Song of Solomon” and “Beloved,” which explored the diverse voices and multifaceted experiences of African Americans.

She received many honors, including the National Book Critics Circle Award, the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction, the National Humanities Medal and the Presidential Medal of Freedom.

In 1993, she made history as the first African American woman to win the Nobel Prize in literature.

Ethel Kessler, an art director for USPS, designed the Forever stamp with a photograph by Deborah Feingold.

The Toni Morrison stamp will be available in panes of 20 at Post Offices and

Managing diabetes

Postal Service employees can participate in an upcoming webinar to learn nutrition and management techniques for controlling diabetes, a chronic health condition that affects more than 34 million people in the United States.

“Diabetes: Manage Well, Live Well!” will be held Monday, March 13, at noon EDT. The session is hosted by the Wellness team and GEHA.

Participants must register before the event on the webinar website. After signing up, directions for accessing the webinar will be emailed to each registrant.

Following the event, the webinar will be available for on-demand access.

Participation is voluntary. Nonexempt employees may only participate off the clock or during authorized breaks.

For more information, email the USPS Wellness team or visit the USPS Wellness LiteBlue