YORK, Pa. — (Editor's note: The above video is from Feb. 2, 2022.)
To paraphrase fictional meteorologist Phil Connors, "It's (almost) Groundhog Day...again."
Thursday, Feb. 2 marks one of Pennsylvania's most-hallowed of winter traditions, when rodents from across the commonwealth step out of their burrows to predict how much longer the season will last.
According to Pennsylvania Dutch superstition, if a groundhog sees its shadow on Feb. 2 due to clear weather, it will retreat to its den and winter will persist for six more weeks. If there is no shadow because of cloudiness, spring will arrive early.
In the old German tradition, it was a badger that did the weather predictions, not a groundhog. But immigrants to the U.S. from Germany adopted the groundhog when they arrived here in the early 1800's.
The most famous of Pennsylvania groundhogs is Punxatawney Phil, who residents of the western Pennsylvania borough believe has been making weather predictions since 1886.
Phil will do his thing from Gobbler's Knob again this year, and you can watch a live stream of the big event right here.
But if you don't want to make the long drive to Jefferson County to see the event in-person and live streaming just doesn't do it for you, Central Pennsylvania has its own group of prognosticating rodents that mark the occasion.
Here are just a few of the local rodents who will be making their weather calls about the length of this year's winter on Feb. 2:
The Slumbering Lodge of Hibernating Governors in Kirkwood will host its annual Groundhog's Day celebration, featuring a prediction from Octoraro Orphie, the "one true groundhog," according to lodge members, at 8 a.m.
The lodge is located on White Rock Road.
"Every year since 1908, Orphie's phenomenal (and still unbroken) streak of correct predictions has earned him the title of 'the one true groundhog,'" the lodge says.
The Manheim Township Recreation and Park Planning Department is hosting their 3rd Annual Groundhog Day Celebration on Thursday, February 2. The event is open to the public and begins promptly at 7 am at the Carriage House at Stauffer Mansion, 1241 Lititz Pike.
The event is family friendly, and free for all to attend.
There will be arts and crafts, hot chocolate, light refreshments, music, and an appearance and photo opportunities with the Manheim Township Recreation Groundhog mascot.
Last year, M.T. Parker, a life-like groundhog plush toy, saw his shadow and the prognostication called for six more weeks of winter.
Guests are encouraged to arrive early, with the prognostication occurring at sunrise.
For more information, go here.
The Mount Joy Chamber of Commerce will host a Groundhog's Day celebration at 7 a.m. at the Rotary Clock on Marietta Avenue and East Main Street, where Mount Joy Minnie, the borough's official groundhog prognosticator, will make her call for the length of the season.
The Lancaster Barnstormers, Zoetropolis Cinema Stillhouse, Our Town Brewery, Acorn Acres Wildlife Rehabilitation, and Hempfield Apothetique will host Poppy's Annual Groundhog Day celebration at 11 a.m. in downtown Lancaster.
The event begins at 10 a.m., with an official prognostication from Poppy the Groundhog (and her younger brother, Elliott) at 11.
Go here for more details.
The Union Kanaal Grundsau Lodsch #17 of Eastern Lebanon County will celebrate Groundhog's Day at Myerstown Recreation Park, beginning at 8 a.m.
The lodge's furry mascot, Uni, will make its prediction at the end of the ceremony, as it has done since 1982.
A relative newcomer to the weather prediction game, Mount Gretna's Grady prefers to have the spotlight to himself, so he makes his official prediction two days late, at the Mount Gretna Fire Company's annual pancake and sausage breakfast on Saturday, Feb. 4.
Grady will make his prediction at 10:15 am.
More details available here.
The York Slumbering Groundhog Lodge will host its annual Groundhog Day extravaganza at the Elks Lodge No. 213, on 223 N. George Street.
The ceremony culminates with the traditional prediction by "Poor Richard," the lodge's groundhog prognosticator.
There's a Countdown Clock to Poor Richard's big moment on the lodge's homepage.