6 More Weeks of Winter…PHIL says!

I am livid this morning because I just learned about Chuck, the Staten Island groundhog!!! Who in the world decided that Staten Island should create their own groundhog to compete with Punxsutawney Phil? And he even conflicts with Phil’s predictions! I am 100% positive this was a move by the Staten Island Zoo to try to create some reason for people to come out to Staten Island or pay attention to their news one day of the year.

Staten Island Chuck is noted as the official groundhog meteorologist of New York City who predicts the duration of winter each February 2 on Groundhog Day – the same day as Phil! He makes the prediction based on whether or not he sees his shadow at 7:30 A.M. on Groundhog Day. The ceremony at the zoo is often attended and officiated by the Mayor of New York City. Last year, Chuck BIT the mayor – what a sweet groundhog?!?!

Punxsutawney Phil is a groundhog resident of Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania. On February 2, the town of Punxsutawney celebrates the beloved groundhog with a festive atmosphere of music and food. During the ceremony, Phil emerges from his temporary home on Gobbler’s Knob. According to the tradition, if Phil sees his shadow and returns to his hole, the United States will have six more weeks of winter. If Phil does not see his shadow, spring will arrive early. The date of Phil’s prognostication is known as Groundhog Day in the United States and Canada – it is not the day of CHUCK! During the rest of the year, Phil lives in the town library with his “wife” Phyllis. A select group, called the Inner Circle, takes care of Phil year-round and also plan the annual ceremony. Members of the Inner Circle are recognizable by their top hats and tuxedos.

You can tell from these photos that Phil is the cuter, sweeter, original groundhog for Groundhog’s Day – why else would the movie have been filmed in Punxsutawney – not in Staten Island – well, actually, I can come up with a few other reasons! Here’s to 6 more weeks of winter…because that’s what PHIL predicted…

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