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February 02, 2019

Groundhog Day 2019: Did Punxsutawney Phil see his shadow?

The groundhog does his best to save Pennsylvania from more freezing cold

Groundhog Day Animals
Groundhog top hat Alan Freed/Punxsutawney Spirit/SIPA USA

Puxsutawney Phil, hamming it up -- hogging it up? -- in 2013.

After a polar vortex swept through Pennsylvania, Punxsutawney Phil has come to the rescue.

Punxsutawney Phil didn’t see his shadow on Saturday morning, meaning Pennsylvanians can expect an early spring — if they believe a groundhog, that is.

The illustrious Groundhog Day, which is celebrated every year on Feb. 2, is a unique Pennsylvania-based tradition which dates back to the 19th century.

If Punxsutawney Phil sees his shadow, the legend goes, there will be six more weeks of winter. If he doesn’t, which he didn’t, an early spring is coming.

According to Visit Pa., the event draws nearly 20,000 people to the town of Punxsutawney, which has a population of less than 6,000 during the rest of the year.

Turnout in Punxsutawney, despite a wind chill of negative-three at 7:15 a.m., was wall-to-wall at Gobbler’s Knob:

The crowd featured at least one very good groundhog hat:

Men in top hats danced to The Isley Brothers' "Shout":

When Phil was taken out of his hut this year, the event’s MC for some reason uttered this phrase: “All hail groundhog supremacy.” I have no idea what that means.

Eventually, he "prognosticated" an early spring, and everyone in Punxsutawney rejoiced.

In short, it was another very weird day celebrating a very weird holiday. It’s going to be 61 degrees in Philadelphia on Tuesday.

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