Groundhog Punxsutawney Phil Forecasts Early Spring

Posted February 03, 2019

In Pennsylvania, nationally renowned Punxsutawney Phil, predicted an early spring moments before Chuck made his forecast.

Just when you thought the holidays were over, Groundhog Day rolls around again to remind you that, somewhere out there, a bunch of people have flocked to a small town in Pennsylvania to wait for a large rodent to predict the weather.

The day was first written about in the Punxsutawney Spirit newspaper in 1886.

The tradition of Groundhog Day dates back almost 200 years, as American settlers from Germany believed a cloudless sky would lead to an extended winter.

When Willie came out this morning, he saw no shadow.

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It may be hard to believe as a large swath of the USA thaws out from a bitter polar vortex, but spring is coming early, according to handlers for some of the country's most famous prognosticating groundhogs.

Buses brought visitors up to Gobbler's Knob where Phil came out of his burrow earlier this morning.

This is only the 19th occasion in which Phil has not been able to see his shadow since 1887.

According to members of the Groundhog Club, Phil, after making the prediction, chatters to the club's president in "Groundhogese".

Just before 7:30 a.m. Saturday, Punxsutawney (puhnk-suh-TAW'-nee) Phil emerged from his burrow in Pennsylvania at sunrise and didn't see his shadow.

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Why is Groundhog Day a thing?

The group believed the act would bless the household throughout the winter.

They started running at early as 3am ET, hours ahead of Phil's prediction.

A proclamation will be read aloud that determines if Phil has seen his shadow (meaning six more weeks of winter) or hasn't, which purportedly means an early spring.

How can I watch Punxsutawney Phil on Groundhog Day 2019? The brown furball is only right about 40 per cent of the time, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).

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