x

Travel

Not Snow Nor Pandemic Keeps Punxsutawney Phil From His Job

February 2, 2021

PUNXSUTAWNEY, Pa. — Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor pandemic stays Punxsutawney Phil from emerging from his burrow to forecast whether there will be six more weeks of winter or an early spring.

The spectacle that is Groundhog Day at Gobbler's Knob in Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania, will still go on but because of the coronavirus pandemic, revelers won't be able to see him and celebrate in person: This year, it's all virtual.

Beginning at 6:30 a.m. EST Tuesday, people can log on  and listen to winter- and spring-inspired Spotify playlists while learning how to make Wigle Whiskey cocktails and at-home crafts, including the official cookie of Groundhog Day. 

Then of course, the prognosticator of prognosticators — assisted by his Inner Circle — will emerge at dawn, either to find his shadow or not. If he sees it? Six more weeks of winter. If he doesn't, spring comes early.

The livestream from Gobbler's Knob, a tiny hill just outside Punxsutawney about 65 miles (105 kilometers) northeast of Pittsburgh, is made possible by the Pennsylvania Tourism Office's Holi-stay PA. The event there — always Feb. 2 — dates back to 1887.

"Whether you're hoping for six more weeks of winter fun or an early spring, we could all use some extra happiness this year," said department spokesperson Carrie Lepore in a release.

Phil this year, like many years in the past, will be giving his forecast during a major snowstorm that's hitting the entire Northeast.

The annual event has its origin in a German legend about a furry rodent. Records dating to the late 1800s show Phil has predicted longer winters more than 100 times. The 2020 forecast called for an early spring — however, Phil didn't say anything about a pandemic. 

Punxsutawney Phil may be the most famous groundhog seer but he's certainly not the only one. There are two other high-profile "imposters," as the Punxsutawney Groundhog Club calls them, in the region.

Staten Island Chuck will be asked for his prophesy Tuesday around 8 a.m. at the Staten Island Zoo in New York. That event will be streamed on Facebook since the zoo is closed.

Also without fanfare, Chuckles, Connecticut's official state groundhog, will make a prediction from home: the Lutz Children's Museum in Manchester. That will also be streamed on Facebook. Chuckles X  died in September, and it remains to be seen whether an anointed Chuckles XI will emerge Tuesday.

RELATED

ATHENS - Just in time for the approaching summer season of tourists already pouring in as the COVID-19 pandemic gradually abates is the good news that Greece’s beaches ranked second in the world for quality.

Top Stories

General News

FALMOUTH, MA – The police in Falmouth have identified the victim in an accident involving a car plunging into the ocean on February 20, NBC10 Boston reported.

General News

NEW YORK – Meropi Kyriacou, the new Principal of The Cathedral School in Manhattan, was honored as The National Herald’s Educator of the Year.

General News

PHILADELPHIA – The Federation of Hellenic Societies of Philadelphia and Greater Delaware Valley announced that the Evzones, the Presidential Guard of Greece will be participating in the Philadelphia Greek Independence Day Parade on March 20.

Video

Mitsotakis Addresses Boston College Graduation Ceremony

BOSTON - Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis spoke at the 146th graduation ceremony of Boston College, held on Monday.

Enter your email address to subscribe

Provide your email address to subscribe. For e.g. abc@xyz.com

You may unsubscribe at any time using the link in our newsletter.