Prepare for 6 More Weeks of Winter Thanks to Today's Groundhog Day Prediction

Good news for skiers!

Dan McGinley shows a scroll to the crowd as Groundhog handler AJ Derume holds Punxsutawney Phil, who saw his shadow, predicting a late spring during the 136th annual Groundhog Day festivities on February 2, 2023

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It’s going to be six more weeks of winter after groundhog Punxsutawney Phil saw his shadow on Thursday morning. 

The famous groundhog, who lives in Pennsylvania, was brought out of his tree stump to greet his adoring fans in Gobbler’s Knob to chants of “Phil” before being placed on top where he saw his shadow, according to a live stream of the event. Thursday’s events mark the 108th time Phil has seen his shadow.

“It is an honor for me to be here today with the world-famous weather prognosticating groundhog Punxsutawney Phil,” Rick Siger, the acting secretary of the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development, said in a statement. “We are very fortunate to have thousands flock to the Pennsylvania Wilds each year to await his prediction and to have millions more tune in on television to learn of winter’s fate.”

More than 20,000 visitors were on hand to witness the festivities in person.

“Every February 2 it’s amazing [to] see the faithful followers of Punxsutawney Phil who gather early in the morning at Gobbler’s Knob. You can feel the excitement and energy from the crowd,” Thomas A. Dunkel, the president of the Punxsutawney Groundhog Club, said in the statement. “We sent ticket packets to 46 different states across the U.S. and over 30 different countries around the world… That’s what makes talking to our bucket list visitors so much fun and interesting.”

Phil (or some version of him) has been forecasting since 1887 and has had an accuracy rate of about 40 percent over the past 10 years, according to the National Centers for Environmental Information at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Last year, Phil predicted a long winter and the contiguous United States saw slightly below average temperatures in February and above average temperatures in March.

Phil also saw his shadow in 2021.

This year, Phil’s prediction matches up with the start of astronomical spring, according to NOAA.

It may be a while before the return of light jackets and longer days, but more winter isn’t all bad with more time on the slopes, long nights spent with a cup of hot chocolate, and days spent cuddling up in cozy sweaters.

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