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Track Santa Claus around the world with NORAD

Christmas Santa Tracking
Posted at 9:20 AM, Dec 24, 2021
and last updated 2021-12-24 11:20:03-05

For the 66th year, NORAD is here to help us track Santa as he travels the world to deliver Christmas gifts.

The North American Aerospace Defense Command Santa tracker has been a tradition since 1955 when a local newspaper ad told kids they could call Santa directly, but the number was misprinted.

Instead of reaching the man in red, kids called the crew commander on duty, U.S. Air Force Colonel Harry Shoup, at the Continental Air Defense Command Operations Center, the predecessor to NORAD.

According to NORAD, Shoup quickly realized the mistake and assigned a duty officer to continue taking the calls and assuring the kids that they reached Santa. And, a holiday tradition was born.

NORAD has carried on the tradition each year since reporting on Santa's location on Christmas Eve to millions of kids worldwide.

NORADSanta.org doesn't only feature Santa's tracker, though — which goes live at 4 a.m. EST on Christmas Eve. It also has a holiday countdown, games, movie theater, holiday music, website, and more.

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

There is also a NORAD Tracks Santa app for your phone.

Trackers can also call to see where Santa is at 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.

Emily McCain at WFTS first reported this story.