The pandemic won't stop NORAD from tracking Santa
Video transcript: History was made in December 1955, when a phone call came in to the Continental Air Defense Command in Colorado Springs, Colorado.
Answering the call, Colonel Harry Shoup was surprised to hear the voice of a child asking to speak to Santa Claus.
Soon after more phone calls began filling up the phone lines, all with eager children hoping for a chance to talk to Old Saint Nick.
Little did Colonel Shoup and his team know, a department store had placed an ad in the local paper hoping to draw children to their holiday toy sale.
The misprinted phone number rang directly into an important red phone in the CONAD Operations Center, and thus the holiday tradition was born.
Colonel Shoup's command team fielded calls all night long. Checking radars and informing children of Santa's progress.
The tradition continued through the founding of NORAD in 1958, and has gone on to become a global phenomenon.
Today, NORAD's cutting edge technology provides real time updates on Santa's yuletide journey around the world.
Our constellation of defense satellites use infrared radar to keep pinpoint accuracy on the heat signature from Rudolph's nose.
Ground-based radar tracking sites relay updates to our elite fighter pilots, who often escort Santa's sleigh through North American air space.
Our maritime partners in the Navy and Coast Guard make sure the seas are safe and secure beneath the flight path of the man in red.
And finally, our special Santa cameras in strategic locations around the world capture images of Santa during his flight.
At the heart of it all, people can call or email the NORAD Tracks Santa operations center in Colorado Springs on December 24 at 1 877 HI-NORAD (1 877 446-6723) .
Volunteers are standing by to answer that all important question, ‘When will Santa get to my house?’
All of this is made possible by our volunteers and the amazing generosity of our corporate and government partners.
Together our affiliates bring this time-honored tradition to families around the world. What began with a single phone call has inspired the imaginations of countless children across the planet for more than half a century.
No matter what is happening in the world, NORAD continues to keep the watch. Maintaining the security of the skies across North America and beyond, and bringing a little holiday magic to us all.