ONLINE EXCLUSIVE: Phil predicts six more weeks of winter

Every year in Feb. Punxsutawney Phil comes out of his burrow to decide whether or not we will have six more weeks of winter. The way he does this is determined by if he sees his shadow or not. Although it is considered a small holiday, in the town of Punxsutawney, PA,  it is a large event. Tens of thousands of people show up to see if Phil sees his shadow. This year, Phil saw his shadow. That means we have six extra weeks of winter.

 

The first Groundhog Day took place on February 2, 1887. According to History.com “Groundhog Day has its roots in the ancient Christian tradition of Candlemas, when clergy would bless and distribute candles needed for winter.”

 

The holiday was especially popularized in 1993 when the movie Groundhog Day starring Bill Murray was released.  The movie also popularized the use of the phrase “groundhog day.” When someone says that something feels like “groundhog day” they mean: it feels like the same exact thing is happening over and over again. “I remember seeing that movie when I was younger. It was a really funny movie that I will always remember,” junior Andre Khoury said.

 

It is often debated whether the groundhog is really accurate. “I would guess that the groundhog is correct about 80 percent of the time,” sophomore Nate Gilkey said.

 

Contrary to popular belief, the groundhog has only been correct about 39 percent of the time. This means that most of the time, the groundhog is actually wrong. “I never would have guessed that it would be that low. That is pretty shocking,” Gilkey said.

 

One of the issues with a groundhog predicting whether or not spring comes early is question of what actually constitutes as an early spring, and how in the world would a groundhog be able to know this. “I think that groundhogs predicting the weather seems a little odd. I never really understood how it could possibly know,” Khoury said.

 

Overall, groundhog day is a fun holiday. “I think it is a good holiday. There is no problem with having a long lasting tradition like this. There is no need to do away with it or anything,” junior Lucas Previti said.

 

Adam Friedman

Staff Writer

 

 

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