For most of the year, Phil is mainly a local attraction.
While Punxsutawney Phil may be the most notable groundhog, he's not the only one, as other municipalities have adopted their own version of the prognosticating rodent. Birmingham Bill is the groundhog for Groundhog Day in Alabama, Staten Island Chuck is the official groundhog for the ritual in New York City while Shubenacadie Sam is the groundhog for the occasion in Canada, the report said.
If it does not see its shadow, spring will arrive soon.
While Phil makes his prediction every year on the second of February, the celebration actually begins days before with events that include the annual #Groundhog Day banquet, hayrides, live concerts and much more. Or will he say an early spring with no shadow sighted?
However, Phil's prediction was decided ahead of time by the top hat and tuxedo-wearing members of the Punxsutawney Groundhog Club's Inner Circle.
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Did You Know? The word monax in the groundhog's scientific name (Marmota monax) means "solitary".
Punxsutawney Phil has spoken!
However, the party starts way before that.
Supposedly, the Romans brought this tradition to the Germans that concluded if the sun made an appearance on Candlemas Day, an animal would cast a shadow, thus predicting more winter. The Groundhog has been around for over one hundred years, and year after year, he gives a 6-week forecast: Will spring come early, or will winter hold on for a bit longer?
The Groundhog Day 2018 will commence at 7:25 a.m. EST, Friday.
In the 1880s a western Pennsylvania newspaper editor hatched the Groundhog day idea, sold town fathers on it, and the Punxsutawney Groundhog Club - and the holiday - were born. So far, Milltown Mel in New Jersey has disagreed with Phil's estimation, predicting instead an early spring. Griffiths like to say Phil is taken by way of secret tunnels to throw off anyone who might be following them. Germans based upon the convention by looking to the hedgehog as an indicator of climate, the legend goes, and German pilgrims in Pennsylvania later changed to the groundhog.