RUMFORD – The 42-pound, single-page letter to Santa from local folks last month has caught the attention of two overseas publishers of books listing world record-holders.

Scot Grassette of Rumford, originator of the 23- by 131-foot letter listing wishes from 495 people, heard from Record Holders Republic, a United Kingdom company.

According to the company’s Web site, the letter holds the record for most names and wishes.

Another publisher of the unusual, this one based in Leipzig, Germany, wants to list the Santa letter in its annual “The Book of Alternative Records.”

Grassette said the letter will likely be listed in both books, and he plans to buy both.

In the meantime, he is waiting to hear from “Ripley’s Believe It Or Not” publishers in Essex, England. A decision will be made on what to include in the annual edition of that book within the next few weeks.

Whether the letter makes it into Ripley’s, or any other listing, really isn’t that important, Grassette said.

“I thought it would be a feather in the cap to have it recorded, and it’s a feel-good thing, but we’ve accomplished everything we wanted to do,” he said.

An application for a listing was sent to The Guinness Book of World Records, which declined to create a new category of world’s largest single-page letter.

The Nov. 29 letter-writing event drew hundreds of people to the Mountain Valley High School gymnasium to have their wishes added and to watch a magic show and shop for crafts and food. About $3,000 was raised for the high school’s majorette team.

The letter was shipped in December to North Pole, Alaska, the official destination for children’s letters to Santa.

The scale of the project led to media coverage from throughout New England.

The paper was donated by NewPage Corp., where Grassette works as an electrician.


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