Repeat Pete

By Mick Holien

It’s unfortunate that by the time to hear this, your fate has been determined.

Indeed dateline Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania, Gobbler’s Knob where since Feb 2, 1887, groundhog day has been celebrated and here bin its 131st year it has been determined that

 Punxsutawney Phil failed to see his shadow and brimming with my own sunshine I decree the western part of the Treasure State is due for an early spring.

So there you go joined by a rodent the driveway snow already is swishing south discovering that Feb 2 is the exact halfway mark between winter solstice and the spring equinox.

How bout them apples.

I guess it would be predictable that it was a newspaper editor who came up with the idea, eventually convincing hog hunters to gather at Gobbler’s Knob to utilize their supposed forecasting skills.

I say predictably because years ago between radio and newspaper people you had a creative bunch that spun a yarn or two but had the time, talent and ingenuity to create such tomfoolery.

I fear that’s been stifled. An early just sayin’

Anyway thanks to Clymer Freas who founded the Groundhog club and forever captured for a time our examination.

The same day is recognized as Candlemas Day by early Christians in Europe.

The Germans for example according to Wikipedia used a hedgehog and if a shadow was seen it indicated a tough winter.

The same in Europe where if it was clear and sunny a harsh winter was in the offing and the opposite applied.

When Germans arrived in Pennsylvania in the 1700s the tradition followed although with the groundhog, sacred among local tribes, instead of the hedge.

An email on their website asks former Nine Mile Valley resident Andi McDowell to visit on Groundhog Day – you know like the movie. Guess they were’s interested in Bill Murray.

How bout your odds – phil has seen his shadow 103 times and no shadow just 18 times.

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