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Olympics, Columbus dominate the news

This year will be known as featuring a pair of historic celebrations _ the Olympic Games and the 500th anniversary of Christopher Columbus' voyage to the New World.

Also on the USPS agenda are stamps emphasizing nature's beauty showing flowers, birds and animals.

A continuing series for '92 will be a 10-stamp set observing our participation in World War II. When this series is completed in 1995, a total of 50 stamps and five world maps will have been issued to commemorate the most important events of the 20th century.

Other stamps on the Postal Service 1992 list will honor explorer Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo, aerospace scientist Dr. Theodore von Karman, Kentucky statehood, the 100th anniversary of the New York Stock Exchange, the 50th anniversary of the Alaska Highway, Dorothy Parker, statesman Wendell Willkie and former Chief Justice Earl Warren.

The schedule includes stamps commemorating both the Summer and Winter Olympics, with one of the stamps marking the first time baseball will be played as an Olympic event.

Columbus sails on as April will discover a block of four stamps celebrating the first voyage and will be a joint issuance with the Italian Postal Administration.

And in May, for the first time ever, the USPS will re-issue the historic set of 16 stamps known as the "Columbian Exposition Issue." These classic stamps were issued originally in 1893 to hail the 400th anniversary of Columbus' voyage. The re-issue will consist of five souvenir sheets of three stamps each and a sixth souvenir sheet with the single $5 stamp.

Summer issuances will provide a stunning array of wildflowers arranged in a pane of 50 different stamps. This will be followed with a booklet of stamps featuring five hummingbirds. The nature theme again will be emphasized in October with a five-stamp set depicting animals _ a Bengal tiger, giraffe, giant panda, flamingo and emperor penguin.

Minerals will be featured on a September set of four stamps. The minerals noted will be azurite, wulfenite, vanscite and copper.

Completing the schedule, as usual, will be the pair of Christmas stamps, the traditional and the contemporary. Scheduled release date is Oct. 22.

Other stamps may be added to the schedule later by the USPS.

Love stamps

The most recent Love stamp will be a 29-center to be released in that lovable city of Loveland, Colo. The design depicts a large red heart emerging from an open envelope. The word "Love" appears above the envelope. "USA 29" is at the bottom.

This is the 12th stamp in the Love series, which began in 1973.

First day cancellations are available in the usual two methods. The easiest way is to purchase the new stamps at your local post office, affix to your own envelope, address them and place in a larger envelope addressed to: "Customer Affixed Envelopes, Love Stamp, Postmaster, P.O. Box 9998, Loveland, CO 80538-9991."

If you would rather have the Postal Service do the affixing, send your self-addressed envelope and 29 cents per stamp (in check or money order) to: "Love Stamp, Postmaster, P.O. Box 9998, Loveland, CO 80538-9992."

All orders must be postmarked by March 7.

Israel releases Olympics stamp

Israel has issued a new stamp honoring its participation in the Summer Olympic Games to be held in Barcelona, Spain. Depicted is a sketch of a track and field athlete in action.

The participation in the Barcelona Games is particularly significant for Israel, since 1992 commemorates 500 years of the expulsion of Jews from Spain.

The Israeli Olympic team will bring a special message from their country to the Jewish community in Barcelona to help strengthen current relations between Israel and Spain.

Another significant stamp issuance from Israel marks "Philately Day" in that country. Depicted is a stamp-on-stamp design showing the five mil adhesive from the Doar Ivri set of 1948. The original featured a bronze coin from the ancient First Revolt Period.

For further information on these stamps and first day cancellations, contact the Israel Stamp Collectors Society, Box 854, Van Nuys, Calif., 91408.

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