While most Americans rested up for the Super Bowl, rodent prognosticator Punxsutawney Phil was plucked from comfy hibernation to make his annual Groundhog Day call.
“A Super Bowl winner I will not predict, but my weather forecast you cannot contradict,” said Phil (via an “Inner Circle” scroll-reader) to a crowd of some 25,000.
“Why that’s not a football, but my shadow I see. It’s six more weeks of winter. It must be!”
Locals in Punxsutawney, a small Pennsylvania town of 6,000, say that Groundhog Day has gotten more and more popular ever since the 1993 Bill Murray film bearing the same name.
Groundhog Day in Punxsutawney is equal parts prognostication and party, so we went to check it out.
Here's the main drag in downtown Punxsutawney. It's a five and a half hour drive from New York City. We arrived at 8:30 the night before Groundhog Day.
People were walking around downtown, eating at different food stands and shopping at merchandise tents.
Phil's Burrow is right in downtown Punxsutawney, but they have a special temporary one for the Gobbler's Knob ceremony.
And it was time for Phil to tell Inner Circle President Bill Deeley his prediction. Only the president understands Groundhogese. Deeley then translated for Vice President Jeff Lundy, who read the news to the crowd.
Time to walk or take a bus back to downtown Punxsutawney for breakfast or to the Walmart parking lot where many had parked.
Meanwhile at New York's own Groundhog Day festivities, Mayor Bill de Blasio lost control of Phil's pal Staten Island Chuck.
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