The Rodent Speaks

Here Ye! Here Ye! Here Ye!
On Gobbler’s Knob on this fabulous Groundhog Day, February 2nd, 2008 Punxsutawney Phil, the Seer of Seers, Prognosticator of all Prognosticators,Rose to the call of President Bill Cooper and greeted his handlers, Ben Hughes and John Griffiths.
After casting a weathered eye toward thousands of his faithful followers,Phil consulted with President Cooper and directed him to the appropriate scroll, which proclaimed:
“As I look around me, a bright sky I see, and a shadow beside me.
Six more weeks of winter it will be!”

Punxsutawney Phil saw his shadow Saturday, leading the groundhog to forecast six more weeks of winter. The top-hat- and tuxedo-wearing businessmen called the Punxsutawney Groundhog Club pulled the infamous rodent out of his home in order to predict our weather (poor fella).
I never really understood this tradition. When I was asked why this happened – I had no real answer.
I learned the belief is that if a hibernating animal cast a shadow on Feb. 2 – the Christian holiday of Candlemas – winter would last another six weeks. If no shadow was seen, legend said spring would come early. I still could not find an answer – why the groundhog?

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