Published: Dec 12, 2011 2:16 AM EST
Updated: Dec 12, 2011 4:35 AM EST

CAPE CORAL, Fla.- Tis the season when thousands of "Dear Santa" letters flood post offices nationwide. Some carefully-selected mail carriers are helping Santa out by answering each and every letter.

Consider them Santa's displaced elves, operating out of a Cape Coral workshop.

"When you start looking at these Santa letters it really opens your heart up," said USPS mail carrier Bonnie Beauchesne.

That's why the group of Southwest Florida mail carriers spend their one day off, assisting Santa in answering letters to the North Pole.

With a dash of glitter and some elbow grease...they're making sure a little magic is delivered to every mailbox.

"We take pride in making the envelopes memorable," said USPS mail carrier Rod Thomas.

These elves have been helping out Ol' Saint Nick since 1988.

Since then, they've received Christmas wishes from as far away as Cuba-- and not always from children.

"Quite a few years ago, we got a letter from a guy in prison. Not really sure why he was there, what he did to be there. But he was asking for Santa to give him a Governor's pardon!" Beauchesne laughed.

This year, they're gearing up to answer 2,500 letters.

"Each year it seems to get a little bigger, a little bigger. Two years ago we did about 2,300, last year we did 1750 I believe it was," Thomas said.

While it's a big job, the Cape Coral crew says it's a simple way of spreading the holiday spirit.

"I think it's the purest form. I mean everything is so commercial now. You gotta feel that, just the joy of Christmas," Thomas said Sunday.

Thomas says about 40% of "Dear Santa" letters do not list a return address. To ensure you get a response, don't forget to list your return address on the envelope.