You Gotta See This

You Gotta See This

You Gotta See This

Another year, another Groundhog Day. This year, Punxsutawney Phil made his prediction.

“Glad tidings on this Groundhog Day. An early spring is on the way,” a proclamation was read out at Gobbler’s Knob, exciting a crowd of thousands of people who waited hours to see the famous rodent.

According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, on average, Phil has gotten his predictions right 30% of the time over the past ten years.

Groundhog’s Place in Pop Culture

The holiday is referenced in the 1993 movie starring Bill Murray, called Groundhog Day. Apparently, the movie created a resurgence of interest in the holiday after it came out. The Associated Press reported that event organizers voiced concern about rowdy crowds drinking all night, people climbing trees and others stripping to their underwear. Alcohol is now prohibited at Gobbler’s Knob, Phil’s spot some 80 miles (123 kilometers) northeast of Pittsburgh.

Groundhog Day Tradition

Many of us know the tradition of the groundhog emerging from hibernation, coming out of his den, and predicting whether winter will carry on longer. If the groundhog sees his shadow, it will return to hibernation and cold weather will persist for another few weeks. If not, warm weather is right around the corner.

Punxsutawney Phil is one of the most well-known examples of forecasting animals. According to the Punxsutawney Phil website, it has been a tradition since 1887. There are also many other groundhogs, and even other animals, who are consulted for a sign of when winter will be over. Some of these other rodents include Potomac Phil in Washington D.C., Jimmy the Groundhog in Wisconsin, and Staten Island Chuck in New York, among others.

The Associated Press reported that there have been weather-predicting groundhogs in at least 28 U.S. states and Canadian provinces, and less formal celebrations far and wide.

Take a look at some of the other states’ animal predictions on Groundhog Day below.

  • General Beauregard Lee – Jackson, Georgia

    General Beauregard Lee of Jackson, Georgia made his official Groundhog Day prediction. According to USA Today, it will be an early spring according to this groundhog. Today at 7:30 a.m., a live stream of the event took place at the Dauset Trails Nature Center Facebook page. It ended shortly after General Beauregard Lee’s prediction.

     

  • Buckeye Chuck – Marion, Ohio

    Did Buckeye Chuck of Marion, Ohio see his shadow? He did not. In fact, the groundhog, like many of the others, predicted an early spring this year. “It’s official…BUCKEYE CHUCK did NOT see his shadow! Early spring!!,” they wrote on the groundhog’s Facebook page. There’s a chance that Ohio may see an early spring, according to this groundhog.

  • Stormy Marmot – Aurora, Colorado

    Stormy Marmot of Aurora, Colorado is well-known to many out west. This weather predictor is a stuffed yellow-bellied marmot that has been providing weather predictions since 2006. According to its Marmot Adventures blog, Stormy predicted an early spring. “After a bitterly cold January, predicting anything resembling spring seemed like a stretch, but as I looked for my shadow this morning, it was conspicuously missing,” the blog said.

  • Woodstock Willie – Woodstock, Illinois

    Woodstock Willie lives in Woodstock, Illinois where the cult classic 1993 film Groundhog Day was filmed. Willie joins many of the other groundhogs with the same prediction. He did not see his shadow. According to NBC Chicago, Woodchuck Willie forecasted six more weeks of winter after seeing his shadow in 2023. Today, this groundhog was featured on the Today Show during Al Roker’s Groundhog Day weather forecast.

  • Potomac Phil – Washington, D.C.

    Potomac Phil of Washington, D.C. is a bit different than other groundhogs. He’s actually stuffed. Aaron DeNu, organizer of the Groundhog Day celebration, told The Washington Post, “Potomac Phil is currently taxidermied.” He added, “In Pennsylvania, they say that Punxsutawney Phil is kept alive by a magic elixir. We’re looking to get that magic elixir for Potomac Phil.” According to the stuffed rodent’s social media page, it did not see its shadow.

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