Now that Christmas Eve is here and Santa's arrival is fast approaching, it's time to track the where the jolly old man is right now!
The North American Aerospace Defense Command, better known as NORAD, is keeping up with its annual holiday tradition of following Santa Claus' progress as he flies around the world in his sleigh. Using radar, satellites, jet fighters and special Santa cams, NORAD detects Kris Kringle's route and posts photo and video updates onto the official Santa tracker.
See where Santa is currently and check out how many gifts he has delivered so far:
Legend has it that NORAD's tradition began in 1955 after a Sears department store in Colorado Springs placed an ad in the local paper for its "Santa hotline." But the telephone number for kids to call Santa was misprinted, and instead of calling Sears' hotline, children reached their local CONAD (the Continental Air Defense Command, which later became NORAD). Luckily, the director of operations, Colonel Harry Shoup, was on duty at the time, and he instructed his staff to check their radar and give the children updates on Santa's location. And so, the NORAD website states, "a tradition was born."
Over the past 59 years, NORAD has made countless improvements to its Santa tracking service to keep up with modern technology. You can now keep up with Santa's progress in many ways -- checking the tracker at noradsanta.org, emailing firstname.lastname@example.org, pressing the OnStar button in your car, or following the Facebook page, Twitter, YouTube channel, or Google Plus. There's also an official NORAD Tracks Santa app. And as always, you can get updates from volunteer phone operators by calling 1-877-HI-NORAD (1-877-446-6723).