Military center tracking Santa's sleigh ride

Military center tracking Santa's sleigh ride COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – Who says Santa Claus doesn't exist? The military personnel charged with being the eyes in the sky are certainly acting like he does — and they've been joined on the Internet by millions of believers. lotro gold Even doubters have reason to pause when they hear the North American Aerospace Defense Command — or NORAD, which monitors air and space threats against the U.S. and Canada — is in charge of the annual Christmas mission to keep children informed of Santa's worldwide journey to their homes. "They challenge it, but only to a point," said Senior Master Sgt. Sharon Ryder-Platts, 49, who for five years has been a Santa tracker, taking calls from those wanting to know the location of jolly old St. Nick. lotro gold According to NORAD, Santa began his latest flight early Wednesday at the International Date Line in the Pacific Ocean. Historically, Santa visits the South Pacific first, then New Zealand and Australia. NORAD points out that only Santa knows his route. Last year, NORAD's Santa tracking center answered 94,000 calls and responded to 10,000 e-mails. About 10.6 million visitors went to the Web site, which can be viewed in English, Spanish, French, Italian, German, Japanese and Chinese. lotro gold HARBIN, China (Reuters) – China's freezing northern city of Harbin is building what organisers say is the world's largest Santa Claus ice sculpture. The giant Father Christmas, 160 metres (525 ft) long and 24 metres high, centres on an enormous face of Father Christmas, complete with flowing beard and hat. Its huge size and unseasonably warm temperatures have made the job especially challenging, said Tang Guangjun, one of the sculptors. "It is even bigger and higher than last year's, and more difficult. The weather swings between warm and cold, so it becomes very wet and slippery on the ice. It is very dangerous for us," he told Reuters Television. lotro gold Harbin, the capital of Heilongjiang province on the edge of Siberia, is one of China's coldest places. Winter temperatures can drop to below minus 35 degrees Celsius (- 31 F). Every year the city plays host to a world-renowned ice festival. But the effects of global warming are taking a toll as the snow and ice now melt more rapidly than in the past. Organisers said they had to artificially make snow for the Santa Claus sculpture. 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27.12.08 03:17

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