NORAD is ready to track Santa’s flight
For several years now your favorite Montgomery County daily has helped little (and not so little) boys and girls track Santa through the North American Aerospace Defense Command tracking website linked on our website’s front page. The NORAD Tracks Santa website, www.noradsanta.org, that launched Dec. 1, features Santa’s North Pole Village, which includes a holiday countdown, games, movie theater, holiday music, webstore and more.
The official NORAD Tracks Santa app is also in the Apple App and Google Play stores, so parents and children can count down the days until Santa’s launch on their smart phones and tablets. Tracking opportunities are also offered through social media. Starting at 4 a.m. EST on Dec. 24, website visitors can see updates as Santa makes preparations for his flight. Then, at 6 a.m. EST, trackers worldwide can call to inquire as to Santa’s whereabouts by dialing the toll-free number 1-877-Hi-NORAD (1-877-446-6723) where they will either speak with a live phone operator or hear a recorded update. Due to COVID concerns, the NORAD Tracks Santa Operations Center will have fewer phone operators, so callers who do not reach a volunteer will hear a regularly updated recording as to Santa’s current location. Anytime on Dec. 24, Amazon Alexa users can ask for Santa’s location through the NORAD Tracks Santa skill for Amazon Alexa, and OnStar subscribers can press the OnStar button in their vehicles to locate Santa. Santa Trackers can also use the Bing search engine to learn of Santa’s location.
Tracking Santa has been a tradition since 1955 when a local newspaper advertisement informed children they could call Santa directly – only the contact number was misprinted. Instead of reaching Santa, the phone rang through to the crew commander on duty, U.S. Air Force Colonel Harry Shoup, at the Continental Air Defense Command Operations Center, the predecessor to NORAD. Col. Shoup was quick to realize a mistake had been made, and assured the child he was Santa. Shoup then assigned a duty officer to continue answering calls. Thus, a holiday tradition was born, which NORAD has carried on since it was created in 1958. Each year since, NORAD has reported Santa’s location on Dec. 24 to millions of children and families around the world.
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.
In the NORAD Gift shop you can order apparel by following a few easy steps:
Choose YOUTH or ADULT, Select your styles, Select SIZE, COLOR, UP-CHARGE and then click Add to Cart. You will be taken to your cart where you can follow the prompts to a secure page to enter shipping information and pay by credit card.
*Please note that due to COVID and the availability of some items we may substitute your garment with a different brand. If it is absolutely not possible to get your garment style we will contact you. *
The Movie Theater links to the NORAD Tracks Santa YouTube channel where viewers can watch videos and short films about Santa Claus and NORAD.
In the NORAD Arcade anyone can enjoy a plethora of fun and entertaining holiday themed games such as Gift Craft, Polar Plunge, Santa on Skates and Santa Adventures on Candyland.
In The Library you can learn all about your favorite Christmas topics and holiday traditions and finally get an answer to those nagging questions such as “How fast is Santa’s sleigh” and “How long could Santa be at each house to make it all around the world in one night?”
In the Music Stage you can listen to some of Santa’s favorite songs live on the website such as “Santa Claus is Back in Town” by Rampart Winds and “Let it Snow Let it Snow Let it Snow” by Blue Steel.
In NORAD HQ you can read all about NORAD’s mission and how and why they track Santa Claus so accurately every year without fail. Find out what route Santa uses and how NORAD believes Santa fits down chimneys.