Ever wonder how we founded upon looking forward to a groundhog to predict whether or not winter would end early or stay around a little longer? Me too.
Groundhogs day use to be called Candlemas Day. Candlemas day is a Catholic holiday which corresponds to the presentation of Jesus at the temple. It is celebrated on February 2, which is exactly 40 days after Christmas. This was mostly celebrated in Germany however, in Morgantown, Pennsylvania a storekeeper by the name of James Morris shared in his diary some of what was going on during this time. The diary was dated February 4, 1841.
Last Tuesday, the 2nd, was Candlemas day, the day on which, according to the Germans, the Groundhog peeps out of his winter quarters and if he sees his shadow he pops back for another six weeks nap, but if the day be cloudy he remains out, as the weather is to be moderate
There is a poem from England that helps you remember whether or not the groundhog seeing his shadow is good or bad.
If Candlemas be fair and bright,
Winter has another flight.
If Candlemas brings clouds and rain,
Winter will not come again
Did you know that there is more than one groundhog that is to predict whether or not spring will come early or stay late? I didn’t know that we had Woodstock Willie, Stormy Marmot, Buckeye Chuck, Chesapeake Chuck, and so many others.
The one we are all familiar with is Punxsutawney Phil. It might just be from the movie starring Andie MacDowell and Bill Murray or it could be from the actual groundhog. Punxsutawney Phil and his family are taken care of by a group of Inner Circle people. They take care of Phil and his family year round. The Inner Circle provides a week worth of fun activities to do for the town. The inner circle are a group of 16 gentlemen that dress in Top Hats and Tuxedos.
February 2, 2016, Punxsutawney Phil did not see his shadow which means we should have an early spring. If you live in Indiana, it doesn’t feel like we have had much of a winter anyways. Luckily for us, the groundhog has predicted more right than wrong. The paid meteorologist stated that with El Nino carrying warmer weather to much of the United States, they are most certain spring will arrive early.
Until Next Time........