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Monday, February 2, 2009

Groundhog day predicts longer winter

Happy Groundhog Day!

NEW YORK (AFP) – Don't mothball the overcoats yet: groundhog Punxsutawney Phil, America's favorite, furriest weather forecaster, announced Monday that winter will last another six weeks.

Groundhog.org, official website of the bizarre tradition in a small Pennsylvania town that gets international attention, reported: "Phil Says 'Six More Weeks of Winter!'"

The forecast is based on whether the marmot, after being woken from hibernation each February 2, can see his shadow. If he does, spring is another six weeks away. If not, winter is over.

According to the site, Phil announced to a select group of handlers who wear top hats and are known as the Inner Circle: "A bright sky above me showed my shadow beside me. So six more weeks of winter it will be."

Meanwhile, New York's NY1 television reported that a rival groundhog did not see its shadow following unsuccessful attempts by Mayor Michael Bloomberg to lure the creature out of its shelter at a city zoo.

In Punxsutawney, the Inner Circle scornfully dismissed Bloomberg's photo opportunity.

"Punxsutawney Phil is the only true weather forecasting groundhog. The others are just impostors," groundhog.org said.

The tradition has its roots in an old wives' tale brought by German immigrant farmers.

Punxsutawney held its first Groundhog Day in the 1800s, according to the website. The current spectacle, which has become a tourist attraction and was the subject of a Hollywood comedy with Bill Murray in 1983, first took place on February 2, 1887.

4 comments:

Best, Punchy! said...

Hello gorgeous! THAT was not what I wanted to hear today!! I am ready for winter to be over,done, finito, OVERRRRRRR!!!

Hugs!

Alicia aka "Fashiona" said...

Booo!!

fernvalley01 said...

Funny we had an overcast morning in Alberta and our guy whose name escapes me said no to 6 more weeks .I find it funny cause here in Alberta any way to tear it spring starts in end of March which is about 8 weeks away

storybeader said...

heard that Bloomberg got bit! Ouch! They look like they have big teeth, for their size!

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