Groundhog Day is celebrated on Feb. 2 — when people all over the country focus on a small furry animal and whether it will predict an early spring or another six weeks of cold winter weather.
If PUNXSUTAWNEY Phil comes out of its burrow at sunrise and sees its shadow, winter will be around for 6 weeks longer. However, if the groundhog doesn’t see its shadow, spring weather is on its way!
If meteorologists are right, spring is on its way and may be covered in a dusting of snow this year. Since Pennsylvania’s first official celebration of Groundhog Day in Punxsutawney on 1886, the little guy has only seen his shadow 18 times.
Groundhog Day celebrations span centuries, with the earliest mentions of the unique holiday in the United States in the 1700s when German settlers arrived in Pennsylvania and brought the tradition of Candlemas Day. Those who celebrated Candlemas, an early Christian holiday where candles were blessed and distributed, decided that clear skies on the holiday meant a longer winter.
Initially, Germans used a hedgehog to predict when winter would end, but the animal was quickly replaced by the groundhog in Pennsylvania due to its bustling population and likeness to the European hedgehog.

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