Will Punxsutawney Phil see his shadow?

Will Punxsutawney Phil see his shadow?

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YORK, Pa. — From below freezing temperatures at the start of the week, to temperatures in the mid-40s by the end, meteorologists aren’t quite sure what Phil’s going to predict on Groundhog Day, Feb. 2. 

At this point, it’s kind of a toss up. But for betting, perhaps, they suspect Phil won’t see his shadow because of cloudy skies in the forecasts – predicting an early spring for the second straight year.

So, why is Groundhog Day even a thing and where does the legend come from? Here’s a look at its history, how accurate Punxsutawney Phil has been and what predictions look like for 2020. 

What is the legend of Groundhog Day?

Punxsutawney Phil was declared the official weather-forecasting groundhog in 1886.

According to the legend:

If 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.

That’s how the Punxsutawney Groundhog Club describes the Feb. 2 tradition, marking the midway point of winter. 

Is the tradition scientific? Absolutely not.

Are there other furry, weather-predicting animals? Certainly. They include West Virginia’s French Creek Freddie, Georgia’s Gen. Beauregard Lee, Ohio’s Buckeye Chuck, North Carolina’s Sir Walter Wally, Louisiana’s Cajun Groundhog, Alabama’s Smith Lake Jake, Wisconsin’s Jimmy and New York’s Staten Island Chuck (full name: Charles G. Hogg).

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