- Hasenour Motor Co. became the first car dealership to house a Village Post Office, an alternate retail location for postal services in rural communities.
- Hasenour owner John Welp applied for the VPO after the local post office cut its hours, operating only four hours every morning.
- Welp believes customers may buy a car after stopping in for postage stamps.
SAINT ANTHONY, Indiana — Hasenour Motor Co. now sells stamps and postal boxes along with its pre-owned inventory, as it became the first car dealership to house a Village Post Office, according to the United States Postal Service.
VPOs are operated by local businesses contracting with the United States Postal Service, which introduced the concept in 2011 as an alternate retail location for postal services, especially in rural communities.
Hasenour owner John Welp petitioned to house a VPO after the local post office cut its hours, operating only four hours every morning.
"I figured why not pick up the slack and help the community out," Welp told Edmunds.
He added: "I believe it will bring in more people into our dealership and maybe they'll look around and find a car they want to buy."
Hasenour employees have been trained to handle the sale of the postal products. The dealership receives a stipend to house this service.
Because the dealership is open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday to Friday, and from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturdays, residents in the rural community will find it more available than the traditional post office, Welp said.
"We're offering the convenience of being able to come into the dealership when the post office has closed for the day," he said. "So, you can buy a car, a book of stamps and drop off your mail — all at the same time."
The United States Postal Service issued the following statement about the unusual set-up: "One of Saint Anthony's well-established businesses is Hasenour Motor Co., which opened its doors in 1989. A car dealership business has been at that location since 1922.
"On Tuesday, June 24, 2014, history will be made when the first Village Post Office to be located in an auto dealership and the 67th VPO in Greater Indiana District officially opens."
Edmunds says: No doubt car shoppers will put the stamp of approval on this unique arrangement.