NORAD Tracks Santa is an annual Christmas-themed program in which North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) tracks Santa Claus, who is said to leave the North Pole to travel around the world on his mission to deliver presents to children every year on Christmas Eve. The program starts on December 1, but the actual Santa-tracking starts at midnight annually on December 23. It is a community outreach function of NORAD and has been held annually since 1955.
According to Parsons Police Chief Robert Spinks, "NORAD claims to use radar and other technologies to track Santa, their website provides the tracking of Santa and displays predetermined location information to users. You will be able to see the time when SE Kansas and Parsons is visited by the Jolly Man himself by using the NORAD Stana Tracker web site or app."
You can visit the NORAD Tracks Santa web page at: www.noradsanta.org or visit the App Store and search for 'NORAD Track Santa.' This is a free app.
"The Parsons Police Department 9-1-1 Center plugs into NORAD Command using the NORAD Tracks Santa web page. We provide NORAD and Santa with updated weather information for SE Kansas to assist Santa and his reindeer with the best possible routes to our local communities," says Parsons Communications Director Marti Shields.
NORAD relies on volunteers to make the program possible. Each volunteer handles about 40 telephone calls per hour and the team typically handles more than 12,000 e-mails and more than 100,000 telephone calls from more than 200 countries and territories. Most of these contacts happen during the 20 hours from 4 a.m. on December 24 until midnight MST on December 25.
You can learn about NORAD Headquarters, visit the Library at Santa's Village to learn about Santa, his magic sleigh, and holiday traditions or watch movies about Santa and NORAD at the Theater!
"The Parsons Police support this national program to expand the knowledge about Santa and the technology that is used today to ensure his safe passage through U.S. airspace.," said Deputy Chief Dennis Dodd.