Groundhog's Day

Facts

The average groundhog is 20 inches long and normally weighs from 12 to 15 pounds.

Groundhog Day orignated from a German holiday.

The first Groundhog Day was held on Feb.2, 1887 in Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania. The tradition of using an animal to predict the weather was not new to the German immigrants who came to Pennsylvania; however, they usually reiled on badgers and bears. The tradition originated from a German holiday called Candlemas Day, the day between the winter solstice and spring equinox. If the sun came out, there would be six more weeks of winter.

The Groundhogs are not really looking for their shadows.

At this time of year, males emerge from their burrows to start searching for the females, the females come out probably seven days later and stay just outside of their burrow or maybe just inside their burrow. The Groundhogs then go back to hibernation, knowing exactly where their mates are for when they all come out in March.

Bill Murray increased Groundhog Day attendance

Thousands of people come to see Punxsutawney Phil each Feb. 2, but overall attendance increased after the popular Groundhog Day starring Bill Murray in 1993. The highest attendance was 35,000 people in 1997. Last year 18,000 people came out, even though the holiday fell on Super Bowl Sunday.

Groundhog Day links

Groundhog Day Facts
History

Punxsutawney Phil's

Records

2000Shadow at 7:28 AM; 12º overcast skies with flurries
2001Shadow at 7:27 AM; 28º cloudy skies with light snow
2002Shadow at 7:25 AM; 19º mist with a record 38,000 visitors driven to Gobbler's Knob by bus for security.
2003Shadow at 7:27 AM; 30º overcast skies with PA Governor Ed Rendell attending the ceremony.
2004Shadow at 7:27 AM; 17º clear skies with snow on the ground, crowd boos the forecast!
2005Shadow at 7:31 AM; 14º clear skies with a wind chill of 3ºF.
2006Shadow at 7:23 AM; 36º overcast skies with the crowd cheering the Steelers in Super Bowl XL.
2007NO Shadow at 7:28 AM; 26º overcast skies with light snow and mist under a Full Moon.
2008Shadow at 7:27 AM; 28º fog and mist with the crowd booing six more weeks of Winter.
2009Shadow at 7:30 AM; 29º overcast skies as the crowd cheers the Steelers' Super Bowl XLIII victory.
2010Shadow at 7:23 AM; 15º hazy sun and a visit from actor Stephen Tobolowsky (Ned Ryerson).
Animal rights group PETA demands Punxsy Phil be replaced by a robot. LOL!
2011 NO Shadow at 7:25 AM; 34º with rain, snow, and ice covering Gobbler's Knob.
The crowd cheers for Spring and Super Bowl XLV with the Steelers!
2012Shadow at 7:24 AM; 30º overcast skies with PA Governor Tom Corbett attending the ceremony.
2013NO Shadow at 7:28 AM; 8º overcast skies with a Saturday crowd of more than 30,000.
2014Shadow at 7:28 AM; 39º overcast skies with fog. It's Super Bowl XLVIII Sunday.
2015Shadow at 7:23 AM; 34º Freezing rain and drizzle.
2016NO Shadow at 7:25 AM; 24º Clear skies.

Shadow
13
NO Shadow
4