Gov. Scott Walker directed the Wisconsin National Guard and Wisconsin Emergency Management to once again provide assistance for a special holiday traveler Thursday night, as he makes his annual rounds through the Badger State.
"This is a mission we look forward to every year," 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."
Maj. Gen. Don Dunbar, Wisconsin's 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," 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. The Wisconsin Air National Guard's 128th Air Control Squadron, based at Volk Field, Wisconsin, 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. In addition, local law enforcement, fire, emergency management and emergency service agencies from across the state are also ready to assist Santa to ensure he is able to deliver Christmas presents.
You can join ReadyWisconsin and follow Santa as he travels across Wisconsin beginning at 9 p.m. Christmas Eve. Updates will be posted every five minutes on ReadyWisconsin's Twitter and Facebook. You can also use the hashtags #SantaAlert and #OperationSanta to track the Tweets and interact on Twitter.