The Start of Groundhog Day

Phoebe, in CT, declares 6 more weeks of Winter

Senior Brittany Soriano holding a flower she’d found while enjoying her spring walk in April 2020.

Senior Brittany Soriano holding a flower she’d found while enjoying her spring walk in April 2020.

Caitlin Ardito, Staff Writer

     Dating back to February 2, 1887 the first ever Groundhog Day was celebrated in Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania. Every year on the second of February, people all around America wait to see if Punxsuraweny Phil sees his shadow or not.

     Groundhog Day seems to be one of the top odd traditions that are celebrated in the United States and is even one of the oldest traditions.

     It is said that if the groundhog sees his shadow, it’s predicted that there will be six more weeks of winter but if he doesn’t see his shadow then spring is right around the corner. 

     There’s a history behind groundhog day, it began when the Pensylvanian dutch from Europe had already had a holiday called the “badger day”, in German they had decided to start the tradition but instead they called it Groundhog Day. The tradition soon found its ways to the United states and Canada and is now celebrated yearly.

     Time magazine states, “Many of Pennsylvania’s early settlers were German, and they brought this tradition with them, switching the hedgehog for the groundhog, which could be more easily found in their new home, according to the Punxsutawney site.”

     History magazines states, “In 1887, a newspaper editor belonging to a group of groundhog hunters from Punxsutawney called the Punxsutawney Groundhog Club declared that Phil, the Punxsutawney groundhog, was America’s only true weather-forecasting groundhog.” 

     The groundhog was Pennsylvania’s way of depicting the weather for the upcoming weeks. Many other states do have their own animals that they seem to base their weather in certain months on.

     There was a movie created in 1993 called Groundhog Day where actor Bill Murray was reliving the same day over and over. The movie is showing how something is being repeated just like on groundhog day we always receive the same results of a longer winther from Punxsutawney Phil every year.

     Senior Brittany Soriano says, “As weird of a tradition groundhog day is, it’s something we all look forward to because we have hope in having an early spring.”

     In Connecticut, Chuckles the groundhog passed away two months ago leading Phoebe the hedgehog to step in and she predicts six more weeks of winter in Connecticut.