Groundhog Day

Will he, or won’t he?

Photo by Cephas via Wikimedia Commons

Phil won’t spill (the beans, that is).

Not until sometime around 8 a.m. Eastern Time.

Are you hoping for a shadow … or no?

In case you’re unsure of what the shadow portends, here’s the superstition:

If the esteemed Pennsylvania rodent known as Punxsutawney Phil sees his shadow, there will be six more weeks of winter weather. If he does not see his shadow, there will be an early spring.

Photo by Susan Sam via Wikimedia Commons

“The celebration of Groundhog Day began with the Germans, Pennsylvania’s earliest settlers,” explains “They brought with them the legend of Candlemas Day, which states, ‘For as the sun shines on Candlemas Day, so far will the snow swirl in May…’ The settlers found that groundhogs were plentiful and were the most intelligent and sensible animal to carry on the legend of Candlemas Day.”

Photo by Skeeze via Pixabay


For the latest updates on this year’s shadow sighting, it would be prudent to follow Phil on his Facebook page (insert chuckle here).

His “prognostication” is scheduled to occur between 3 a.m. and 8 a.m. (not sure if that timeframe includes some sort of “pre-game” party, but I think I’ll wait till sunup for the report). Check out the official Groundhog Day Guide to see what else goes on in celebration of the 130th annual event.

Of course, if Phil sees his shadow, don’t despair. USAToday reports that, since 1988, the groundhog was “right” 13 times and “wrong” 15 times. In other words, only 13 times did the national average temperature for the remainder of February match what would be expected based on what the groundhog predicted.

And, anyway, if you’re in dire need of spring sunshine, scurry on over to this groundhog’s burrow, where you’re sure to smile:

All in good time, my dear, all in good time.

  1. Winnie Nielsen says:

    This noon tradition and weather prediction of our beloved Phil has long been a fun tradition I have followed. I was reading recently that February 2 is about the equidistant date between the Winter Solstice and the Spring Equinox. It makes sense that we should celebrate this half-way mark. In England, farmers also marked this date as the time when the sunlight lasted long enough in the evening that one didn’t need candles for light as long in the evening before going to bed. Which means, when I think about it, that they sure went to bed early! Early to bed and early to rise, no doubt.

    • MaryJane says:

      Just about now I’m wishing for longer days. I was out early this morning … with a flashlight, checking on your Miss Daisy who was spotting a bit of blood yesterday. She seems fine and is due to calve May 9. She said to tell you hello:)

      • Winnie Nielsen says:

        Oh my!! My Miss Daisy is going to give us a new calf on or near Jubilee weekend and or Mother’s Day? She has perfect timing don’t you think? I hope all stays well during her “confinement”. Don’t ya just love that old reference? Please give Daisy a loving pet on her sweet face for me! I have her delivery date marked marked in my Planner, now.

  2. Groundhog’s Day is huge around here in Amishland PA. Even the ads in the papers have groundhogs hawking their wares. A local chocolate shop sells ” groundhog shadows” -dark chocolate cutouts of a groundhog sitting up. And on it goes.

    Here’s a bit from Wikipedia about the original animal;

    “It has its origins in ancient European weather lore, wherein a badger or sacred bear is the prognosticator, as opposed to a groundhog. It also bears similarities to the Pagan festival of Imbolc (the seasonal turning point of the Celtic calendar, which is celebrated on February 2 and also involves weather prognostication”

    Since we don’t have badgers here but do have similar burrowing animal in the Groundhog , it was substituted.

    Yay- “Punxsutawney Phil” did not see his shadow today and we will have an early spring!

    Oh and fellow farmgirls, one of the cutest movies ever made is ” Ground Hog Day” with Bill Murray and Andie MacDowell. Please watch it, it is adorable!

  3. CJ Armstrong says:

    I heard he did not see his shadow! My hubby says “well that works for the East Coast but not for the West”. In any case, I’m glad daylight hours are longer, especially with all the snow we’ve been getting and the COLD, COLD, COLD! Today is a day that, here in our part of the world, he WOULD have seen his shadow! We have clear, brilliant blue skies and Colorado sunshine, but there is a stiff NW wind and it is a COLD day! BRRRRR!!!!
    Many folks around here think Mr. Groundhog reminds them of an overgrown prairie dog! 😀

  4. Krista says:

    Groundhog day is not a big deal around here. I actually forgot all about it being Groundhog day today. According to his Facebook page it appears that he did not see his shadow and we are in for an early spring. I can say that I am excited to hear this. I have been looking forward to spring for a while now. We are still getting snow and nothing sounds better right now then a warm spring breeze.

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