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PETERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. — The North American
Aerospace Defense Command is prepared to track Santa’s yuletide journey!
The newly redesigned NORAD Tracks Santa website, www.noradsanta.org, goes live Sunday, Dec.
1 featuring a holiday countdown, daily games and activities, videos, music and
more. Beyond a new look, features such as a 3D globe and new interactive
games take advantage of today’s modern web. The site is available in
eight languages: English, French, Spanish, German, Italian, Japanese,
Portuguese, and Chinese.
The official NORAD Tracks Santa app is also available in
the Windows, Apple and Android 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 on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and
Google+. Santa followers just need to type “@noradsanta” into each social
media property to get started.
Starting at 12:01 a.m. MST on Dec. 24, website visitors
can watch Santa make preparations for his flight through the Bing maps and
Cesium technology to track Santa with NORAD in 2D and 3D. Then, at 4 a.m.
MST (6 a.m. EST), trackers worldwide can speak with a live phone operator to
inquire as to Santa’s whereabouts by dialing the toll-free number
1-877-Hi-NORAD (1-877-446-6723) or by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
OnStar subscribers can press the OnStar button in their vehicles to find
Santa’s location any time on Dec. 24. NORAD’s “Santa Cams” will stream videos
on the website as Santa makes his way over various locations.
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.
This year’s contributors include: the 21st Space
Wing, Acuity Scheduling, Alaska NORAD Region, America Forces Network (AFN),
Analytical Graphics, Inc., Avaya, BeMerry! Santa / Noerr Program, Canadian
NORAD Region, The Citadel Mall, Colorado Springs Business Alliance,
Colorado Springs School District 11, Continental NORAD Region, CradlePoint,
Defense Video & Imagery Distributions Systems, Federal Aviation
Administration, First Choice Awards and Gifts, Globelink Foreign Language
Center, Harris, Hewlett Packard (HP), iLink-Systems, Kids.gov, Marine Toys for
Tots, Foundation, Meshbox, Microsoft®--including Azure, Bing, Internet
Explorer, Skype, Windows, and Windows Phone, Naden Band of Maritime Forces
Pacific, National Tree Lighting Ceremony, Naturally Santa’s Inc., Newseum,
OnStar, PCI Broadband, Portable North Pole/ Ugroup Media, Pueblo Riverwalk,
RadiantBlue Technologies, Inc., Ronald McDonald House Charities of Southern
Colorado, Space Foundation, SriiusXM®, The Pentagon Channel, tw telecom ®, U.S.
Air Force Academy Band, U.S. Air Force Band of Liberty, U.S. Air Force Band of
the Golden West, U.S. Air Force Band of the West, U.S. Air Force Band, U.S. Air
Force Heartland of America Band, U.S. Army Ground Forces Band, U.S. Coast Guard
Band, U.S. Department of State Family Liaison Office, U.S. Merchant Marine
Academy, U.S. Band of MidAmerica, Verizon, Visionbox, West Point Band, Windows
Azure, and Xtomic.
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.