The North American Aerospace Defense Command is celebrating the 60th anniversary tracking Santa’s yuletide journey. The NORAD Tracks Santa website, www.noradsanta.org features Santa’s North Pole Village, which includes a holiday countdown, games, activities and more. The website is available in English, French, Spanish, German, Italian, Japanese, Portuguese and Chinese.
Apps also are available in the Windows, Apple and Google Play stores, so parents and children can countdown the days until Santa’s launch on their smart phones and tablets. racking opportunities also are offered on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and Google+. Type “@noradsanta” into each search engine to get started.
Also new this year, the website features the NORAD Headquarters in the North Pole Village and highlights of the program over the past 60 years.
Starting at 11:01 a.m. on Dec. 24, website visitors can view Santa make preparations for his flight. NORAD’s “Santa Cams” will stream videos on the website as Santa makes his way over various locations. Then, at 3 a.m., trackers worldwide can speak with a live phone operator to inquire as to Santa’s whereabouts at the toll-free 1-877-446-6723 or by sending an email to [email protected] Any time on Dec. 24, Windows Phone users can ask Cortana for Santa’s location and OnStar subscribers can press the OnStar button in their vehicles to locate Santa.
It all started in 1955 when a local media advertisement directed children to call Santa direct, only the number was misprinted. Instead of reaching Santa, the phone rang through to the crew commander on duty at the Continental Air Defense Command Operations Center. Thus began the tradition, which NORAD carried on since it was created in 1958.