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Social media provides updates as NORAD tracks Santa Claus

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – Volunteers at the North American Aerospace Defense Command are getting ready to monitor Santa Claus as he makes his Christmas Eve flight.

Technology and social media have become an important part of the U.S. and Canadian military tradition, and NORAD Tracks Santa has already attracted a record 1.5 million Facebook “likes.”

The volunteers will spend Wednesday answering phone calls and emails from children and posting updates on the journey to Facebook, Twitter and on the official NORAD Santa tracker website.

The 59-year-old program now has a control center at Peterson Air Force Base in Colorado Springs, and it generates enough statistics, anecdotes and stories to fill a sleigh.

HOW IT STARTED

A December 1955 newspaper ad invited kids to call Santa, but the phone number it incorrectly listed was instead for the Continental Aerospace Defense Command, the predecessor to the North American Aerospace Defense Command. The officers on duty played along and began passing along reports on Santa’s progress.

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