(NEXSTAR) – With Thanksgiving in the rearview mirror, Christmas is about a month away. That means that in just a few short weeks, Santa Claus will be coming to town.
Can’t wait to see where Santa and his reindeer are on Christmas Eve? With a little help from the North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD), you can follow Santa Claus on his journey around the world.
NORAD, a joint organization between the US and Canada, is responsible for tracking everything that flies in and around the two countries. Around Christmas time, NORAD has a crucial mission: track down Santa.
It’s a tradition NORAD has carried on for more than 60 years that began, accidentally, in 1955. That year, a young woman called the Continental Air Defense Command Operations Center in Colorado Springs thinking she would speak to Santa after seeing a ad in your local newspaper. .
The commander on the other end of the phone, Air Force Colonel Harry Shoup, realized the mistake and assured the girl Santa would arrive safely by Christmas. She was not the last girl to call the unregistered phone number that night. Ultimately, the tradition was born and continued with NORAD after its creation in 1958, according to its website
Thanks to the Internet, millions of children and those patiently waiting for Santa can track down the man in red on the NORAD website.
NORAD does not begin tracking Santa Claus until their radars inform them that he has taken off on Christmas Eve. Meanwhile, his popular website, NORADSanta.orgit will be released on December 1st. Not only does it allow you to track Santa as he begins his gift-giving journey, but it also provides information on NORAD, Santa tracking, and more.
NORAD also offers a hotline that is open for 23 hours starting on Christmas Eve. Last year, the call center received more than 53,000 calls, according to Lt. Sean CarterNORAD Tracks Santa program manager.