Drones Will Keep Watch For Santa Over NEPA

December 24, 2018

If watching NORAD’s Santa Tracker with the little ones is getting a bit stale for parents, there’s a local online alternative this Christmas Eve.

“Drone Pilots from around Northeastern Pennsylvania will be searching the skies for Santa Claus” in 570 Drone’s Santa Watch 2018, according to a news release from Jonathan Edwards, who maintains the 570 Drone page on Facebook.

Parents and children can tune in to the 570 Drone Facebook page any time between 6 and 10 p.m. today “to see an amazing view of the Wyoming Valley as well as possibly capture a glimpse of Santa in action!” Edwards teases.

Some of the towns included in the aerial footage include Wilkes-Barre, Scranton, Pittston, Clarks Summit, Luzerne, Hanover Twp., Swoyersville and Bear Creek.

“There might even be an interview with Santa,” he said in a phone interview Saturday. “It’ll be cool.”

Actually, Edwards says, he’s put together compilations of aerial shots taken at dusk by nearly a dozen drone pilots in Luzerne and Lackawanna counties, and the Santa interview was pre-recorded as well.

“The footage was edited in advance but will be broadcast live,” he said.

Edwards, a 35-year-old Plymouth resident, describes himself as a filmmaker from Wilkes-Barre who has captured and broadcast hundreds of hours of aerial footage from around Northeast Pennsylvania.

Edwards has worked on film sets both large and small in Pennsylvania, New York, Indianapolis and Los Angeles. He specializes in live streaming, behind-the-scenes and producing video content for social media. His videos have over 100 million combined views on YouTube, Facebook and Instagram, he says.

One of his most popular videos with over 36,000 views is titled “Night Falls on Frozen Time,” which shows aerial scenes of a snowy, ice-covered Wilkes-Barre at dusk. Three of his videos showing aerial footage of the destruction from a tornado in Wilkes-Barre Twp. this past June scored more than a quarter-million views in total.

What inspired him to put together the Santa Watch project?

Edwards said it was a comment someone posted on a live video he shot of Wilkes-Barre city council chairman and local historian Tony Brooks giving a history talk at the Market Street Bridge.

“They said, ‘We’re watching it with our kids and we love it.’ I was thinking I’d like to do something that kids would enjoy,” Edwards said.

He recommended liking and following the 570 Drone page on Facebook to get notifications of when the Facebook Live video is broadcasting.

Contact the writer:


570-821-2110, @MocarskyCV

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