Christmas is a time of celebration and happiness, but this year with the spread of Covid-19 and social distancing being the new norm, festivities may not be quite the same. Thankfully, the North American Aerospace Defence Command (NORAD) and Google have been tracking Santa for some time now. Continuing with tradition, the website from NORAD is all set to track Santa this year as well. NORAD spokesman Preston Schlachter said, “We want to offer a fun experience for everybody and maybe take their minds off what 2020 has been like.”
NORAD started tracking Santa since 1955 when a child accidentally called the unlisted phone number of the Continental Air Defense (CONAD) Operations Center upon seeing a newspaper advertisement, which mentioned kids should call Santa. NORAD Tracks Santa has been operating for 65 years now and every year NORAD mentions Santa’s location on Christmas Eve, to millions of children around the world.
The site is available in eight languages which include English, French, Spanish, German, Italian, Japanese, Portuguese, and Chinese, and will use its new, Santa-tracking app and its social media channels to post updates throughout the evening. The website has been loaded with games, holiday music, movies, and more to celebrate Christmas.
Some of the games that are available to play include Polar Plunge, Hyper Hockey, and Holiday Marbles. The page also has a ‘Music Stage’ section which includes Christmas hymns. The website also has a section where children can listen and read about Santa and the Christmas tradition and the theatre section includes small films on Santa and the NORAD. The site also has a chatbox, so users can get their queries answered.
Google’s own Santa tracking system is also live. The search giant has been tracking Santa every year since 2004. The Google Santa tracker website features a colourful design and has a variety of games which include Santa Selfie, Elf Jetpack, and Penguin Dash among others. The website also has fundamental coding-based games, for kids.
Google Assistant and Alexa voice assistant has also been integrated to track Santa for those who wish to try it out.