PETERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. - The North American Aerospace Defense Command's NORAD Tracks Santa Program exceeded its own records in the number of calls, emails and social media followers on Dec 24.
The program, which began after a misprinted ad in a local paper in 1955, has volunteers and NORAD staff answering queries on the location of Santa Claus as he circles the globe delivering presents on Dec 24.
More than 1,250 volunteers in the 23-hour NORAD Tracks Santa operations center answered over 114,000 calls this year from children looking for Santa Claus (up over 12,000 from 2011).
Volunteers ranged from Peterson AFB family members volunteering their time to First Lady Michelle Obama, who for the third year, answered NORAD Tracks Santa calls from Hawaii.
They also received nearly 11,000 emails, which is also an increase from last year's count.
The NORAD Tracks Santa website, www.noradsanta.org, had 22.3 million unique visitors access the site, up nearly 19%, from 235 countries and territories across the globe during the month of December, while fans of the NORAD Tracks Santa Facebook page grew to over 1.2 million followers.
More than 129,000 people also followed Santa's progress on Twitter, an increase of nearly 28% the number from the previous year.