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Groundhog Day 2023 is Here! Did Punxsutawney Phil See His Shadow?

Published on February 2nd, 2023 | Updated on February 2nd, 2023 | By FanFest

Welcome to the year 2023, where winter is predicted to last much longer than we had hoped. Our iconic groundhog Punxsutawney Phil ventured out of his burrow on Gobbler’s Knob earlier today and saw his shadow – an indication that there are six more weeks of cold weather ahead! This marks Phil’s 137th prediction in honor of Groundhog Day! So be sure you bundle up with gloves, scarves, and hats for a few more months before spring finally arrives.

Thousands of people from all over the world came together at Gobbler’s Knob to witness Punxsutawney Phil make his yearly prediction. At 6 a.m sharp, members of the inner circle gathered and called upon him, allowing Phil to emerge from the depths of slumber into cold winter air where he observed his own shadow – signifying six more weeks left in this frigid season according to legend. If no shadow was seen, spring would come early!

While Groundhog Day is a beloved American holiday, it’s best to take Phil the groundhog’s forecast with a pinch of salt. According to NOAA, For the past 10 years, Phil has made 20 predictions in total- only 40% of which have been accurate. His most recent success was predicting an early spring in 2020, and as 2021’s virtual celebration rolled around he maintained this same prognosis with a forecast for six more weeks of winter. 2022 marked his return to an onsite event where again he predicted that we were destined to experience another 6 wintry weeks! Yet regardless of accuracy, Punxsutawney Groundhog Club stands by their belief that Phil has never been wrong.

Tied to an ancient German legend of a furry rodent, Groundhog Day marks its origins in the 18th and 19th centuries as part of Pennsylvania-German tradition. The celebration takes place each year on February 2nd; if said rodent casts a shadow that day, winter will remain for six additional weeks – but with no sign at all, spring comes early!

Drawing from European weather lore that as the settlers used hibernating animals as signs that spring was near, they found a plentiful amount of groundhogs in their new state. This led to the creation of Punxsutawney Phil–who became widely known as “Punxsutawney Phil, Seer of Seers, Sage of Sages, Prognosticator of Prognosticators and Weather-Prophet Extraordinary,” by the “Punxsutawney Groundhog Club” in 1887. The same year that he gained his title also saw Punxsutawny being declared ‘The Weather Capital Of The World’ by an accolade it still holds today!

Although Phil has achieved considerable fame as a groundhog-predictor of weather, he is not alone. Listed by the Punxsutawney Groundhog Club as “imposters,” there are two other prominent prognosticators – Staten Island Chuck from the zoo in Staten Island and Connecticut’s official state groundhog, Chuckles from Manchester’s Lutz Children’s Museum. Unfortunately though, Milltown Mel – New Jersey’s own beloved forecaster – passed away just days before his scheduled annual reveal on February 2nd 2022.

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