Lifestyle

NORAD Set to Track Santa’s Flight

December 1, 2016, 8:00 AM HST
* Updated September 8, 5:12 PM
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Big Island Now stock photo. Nov. 2016

Big Island Now stock photo. Nov. 2016

PETERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Colorado. – The North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) is celebrating the 61st anniversary of tracking Santa’s yuletide journey.

The NORAD Tracks Santa website, launching today, features Santa’s North Pole Village, which includes a holiday countdown, games, activities and more.

The website is available in eight languages: English, French, Spanish, German, Italian, Japanese, Portuguese and Chinese.

It all began in 1955, when a local media advertisement directed children to call Santa directly—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.

Official NORAD Tracks Santa apps are also 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.

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Tracking opportunities are also offered on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Instagram and Google+.

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Santa followers just need to type “@noradsanta” into each search engine to get started.

Starting at 2:01 a.m. EST on Dec. 24, website visitors can watch Santa make preparations for his flight.

NORAD’s “Santa Cams” will stream videos on the website as Santa makes his way over various locations.

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Then, at 6 a.m. EST, trackers worldwide can speak with a live phone operator to inquire as to Santa’s whereabouts by calling1-877-Hi-NORAD (1-877-446-6723) toll-free 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.

NORAD Tracks Santa is truly a global experience, delighting generations of families everywhere. This is due, in large part, to the efforts and services of numerous program contributors: the 21st Space Wing, Acuity Scheduling, Adobe, Alaska NORAD Region, America Forces Network, Analytical Graphics, Inc., Agingo, Avaya, BeMerry! Santa / Noerr Programs, Bing®, Canadian NORAD Region, Chirpon, The Citadel Mall, Civil Air Patrol, Christmas in the Park, Colorado Springs Business Alliance, Continental NORAD Region, CradlePoint, Defense Video & Imagery Distribution Systems, DoD News, The Elf on the Shelf, Extended Stay America, Getty Images, Globelink Foreign Language Center, Harris, Hewlett Packard, Historic Arkansas Riverwalk of Pueblo, iLink-Systems, ikaria consulting, Kids.gov, Level 3 Communications, Marine Toys for Tots Foundation, Meshbox, Microsoft®, Office Depot/Office Max, Naden Band of Maritime Forces Pacific, Newsline360, OneRender, OnStar, PCI Broadband, Portable North Pole/Ugroup Media, Ronald McDonald House Charities of Southern Colorado, SiriusXM®, Space Foundation, Spil Games, Strategic Air & Space Museum, U.S. Air Force Academy Band, U.S. Department of State Family Liaison Office, Verizon, Windows Azure and Zillow.

CHRISTMAS EVENTS

Waikoloa Village Christmas Parade & Keiki Festival Dec. 10
Holiday Card to Hilo: Christmas Around the World Dec. 11
West Hawaii Theatre Presents Nutcracker
Dec. 20–22
NORAD Set to Track Santa’s Flight Through Dec. 25
Magic of the Season Open House in Hilo Dec. 12–16

 

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