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Santa tracker goes live as Wisconsin prepares for his arrival

Governor Scott Walker directed the Wisconsin National Guard and Wisconsin Emergency Management to once again provide assistance for a special holiday traveler Christmas Eve, as he makes his annual rounds through the Badger State.

The Wisconsin National Guard will coordinate its efforts with the North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD). NORAD tracks Santa's route across the United States. 

Follow Santa's travels live on the “Santa Tracker” website.  

“ReadyWisconsin” will also post updates on Twitter and Facebook about Santa's location as he travels across the state.  Parents can use the hashtags #SantaAlert and #OperationSanta to track the Tweets and interact on Twitter.

“This is a mission we look forward to every year,” Governor Walker said.  “By tasking the Wisconsin National Guard and Wisconsin Emergency Management with providing food and water for the reindeer, along with hot cocoa and weather updates for Santa Claus, we are doing our part to help the jolly old elf deliver presents to all the good boys and girls in Wisconsin.”

Major General Don Dunbar, Wisconsin adjutant general, said the Wisconsin National Guard and Wisconsin Emergency Management are up to the task.

“We have plenty of experience helping Santa in Wisconsin,” Major General Dunbar said.  “We also have a lot in common. Santa — like the National Guard — is always ready and always there.  It's an honor to help him complete his mission in Wisconsin.”

A KC-135 Stratotanker from the Wisconsin Air National Guard's 128th Air Refueling Wing in Milwaukee will link up with Santa in the skies over Lake Superior, providing carrots and water for the reindeer, as well as hot chocolate and power bars for Santa. 

Black Hawk helicopters from the Wisconsin Army National Guard's 1st Battalion, 147th Aviation Regiment will be prepositioned along Santa's Wisconsin route, with reindeer feed and blankets in the event an overloaded sleigh is required to land.  The Black Hawks are prepared to sling-load the sleigh if needed.  A special joint logistics team consisting of civil engineers from the Wisconsin Air National Guard's 115th Fighter Wing in Madison, Wisconsin, and vehicle maintenance specialists from the Wisconsin Army National Guard will also be on board one of the Black Hawk helicopters in the event Santa's sleigh develops mechanical issues in Wisconsin.

Additionally, artillery crews from the Wisconsin Army National Guard's 1st Battalion, 120th Field Artillery regiment will be on hand to fire illumination rounds if Santa needs additional light to navigate a stormy night sky or to make an emergency landing.

The Wisconsin Air National Guard's 128th Air Control Squadron, based at Volk Field, will keep other air traffic out of Santa's delivery corridors during his brief time in Wisconsin.

Wisconsin Emergency Management will provide Santa with up-to-date weather reports for safe travel, as well as current data on snow and ice cover to assist with rooftop landings.

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