COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – Many of us track our Amazon packages, but what about Santa’s gifts?
The North American Aerospace Defense Command tracks the location of Santa Claus as he flies with his reindeer around the world to deliver gifts to children. NORAD is celebrating more than 60 years of tracking Santa.
The tracker opens at 12:01 a.m. on Dec. 24. The NORAD Santa Tracker website also offers a chance to explore the North Pole.
A free downloadable NORAD Tracks Santa mobile app (iOS, Android, Windows) is available. Santa can also be tracked via social media via Facebook, Google+, Twitter, YouTube and for the first time in 2016, Instagram.
How did the Command begin tracking Santa's location?
According to a release from NORAD, "The tradition began in 1955 after a Colorado Springs-based Sears Roebuck & Co. advertisement misprinted the telephone number for children to call Santa. Instead of reaching Santa, the phone number put kids through to the CONAD Commander-in-Chief's operations 'hotline.'" the release said. "The Director of Operations at the time, Colonel Harry Shoup, had his staff check the radar for indications of Santa making his way south from the North Pole. Children who called were given updates on his location, and a tradition was born."