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Popular Santa Claus station returns to the airwaves this weekend

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Santa Claus has taken to the airwaves again this Christmas, courtesy of ham operators in Lapland, the northernmost part of Finland.

Station OF9X is once again giving Father Christmas (as the Fins call him) the opportunity to talk with children of all ages on shortwave radio.

They are using super-station "Radio Arcala," which is owned and maintained by Finnish hams and boasts one of the world's largest antenna arrays.

Santa Radio is active on the voice/sideband frequency of 14.225 MHz, with a path to eastern North America estimated between 3 p.m. and 11 p.m. EST.

The station is also being heard on many other frequencies throughout the ham bands all over the world, as of this writing.

Santa Radio has been active since December 18th this year, and is expected to surpass last year's total of 12 thousand contacts in 111 countries, including 3700 in the United States.

About a dozen Finnish operators have taken pride in this project since 1986, citing the fact that Lapland is considered the "official" home of Santa and his workshop and is very close to the North Pole.

Santa Radio also offers colorful display certificates to those who make two contacts with OF9X, or make a single contact and also complete a Christmas crossword puzzle and e-mail the results (see the website for details).

The station also streams video of the OF9X operation at various times of day.


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