Punxsutawney Phil saw his shadow, predicting six more weeks of winter as 11,000 gathered at Gobbler’s Knob on Groundhog Day, in Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania, on February 2, 2015.
Phil’s prognostication coincides with the calendar date of the first day of spring: March 20.
In 2014, Punxsutawney Phil also predicted there would be six more weeks of winter.
In 2013, Phil had forecasted an early spring, which led to one lawyer issuing an indictment for the marmot when cold weather lingered.
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Punxsutawney Phil and Staten Island Chuck were in agreement in their prognostications on this year’s Groundhog Day.
While Punxsutawney Phil tends to get the most attention, Staten Island Chuck stole the show as he squirmed out of New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio’s arms.
Staten Island’s furry prognosticator, Charles G. Hogg, called for six more weeks of cold winter weather on February 2 during a ceremony at the Staten Island Zoo.
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, officiating his first Groundhog Day ceremony on Staten Island, said: “This is one of the great events on Staten Island.”
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio at his first Groundhog Day ceremony on Staten Island
“Chuck and my predecessor didn’t always get along,” said de Bill de Blasio,
“But I’m hoping we can start a new day,” he added.
Wearing protective gloves, Bill de Blasio lost his grip on Chuck for a moment, as the famous groundhog fell to the floor, drawing gasps from the crowd.
With temperatures nearing the 40s, hundreds of folks crowded around Chuck’s log cabin to see the prediction.
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Thousands of people in Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania, have been celebrating Groundhog Day.
Groundhog Phil is famous for predicting whether or not winter is due to end.
The rodent saw his shadow which means winter will extend well into March according to folklore. Had Phil not seen his shadow, it would have meant spring is around the corner.
Phil’s prediction may depress residents in the eastern US, weary from repeated outbreaks of arctic air.
Thousands of people in Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania, have been celebrating Groundhog Day
Since the Groundhog’s first prediction in 1887, Phil has seen his shadow 100 times and not seen it on just 17 occasions. There are nine missing years in the record, but Phil has issued a forecast without exception.
No one questions Phil’s dedication to prognostication, but his accuracy is an unending source of controversy.
Last Groundhog Day, Phil did not see his shadow, a supposed harbinger of an early spring. Yet, bitter cold and snow affected the eastern US deep into March.
The prosecuting attorney in Butler County, Ohio went as far as to seek the death penalty for Phil for “misrepresentation of early spring” before a Pennsylvania law firm came to Phil’s defense, claiming the Ohio attorney had no jurisdiction to prosecute the Groundhog.
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Ohio authorities have issued an “indictment” against Punxsutawney Phil, the groundhog famed for predicting spring’s arrival, after he got it wrong this year.
The groundhog forecast an early spring when he did not see his shadow as he emerged from hibernation on February 2.
Prosecutors in Ohio’s Butler County accuse the rodent of deliberately misleading the public.
They say such a felony should be punished by death.
“Punxsutawney Phil did purposely, and with prior calculation and design, cause the people to believe that spring would come early,” wrote Mike Gmoser, Butler County prosecutor, in an official-looking paper.
Mike Gmoser added the wrong prediction amounted to a felony “against the peace and dignity of the state of Ohio”.
But Bill Deeley, president of the club that organizes Groundhog Day, said Phil has a lawyer and would fight attempted extradition by the Ohio authorities.
Punxsutawney Phil forecast an early spring for 2013 when he did not see his shadow as he emerged from hibernation on February 2
He added the death penalty would be a “very harsh” punishment for the much-loved rodent.
“We’ll have to plead our case one way or the other, but I think we can beat the rap,” Bill Deeley said.
There has been much chatter on social media about Punxsutawney Phil’s incorrect prediction that spring would come early.
Temperatures in the region remain low, with a storm due on Sunday that could bring several inches of snow with it.
Each year thousands of people visit the tiny western Pennsylvania town of Punxsutawney, depicted in the 1993 comedy Groundhog Day, to witness Phil’s prognostication.