In this Feb. 2, 2012 file photo, Groundhog Club handler Ron Ploucha holds Punxsutawney Phil, the weather prognosticating groundhog, during the 126th celebration of Groundhog Day on Gobbler’s Knob in Punxsutawney, Pa. Groundhog Day is Saturday, and the community is holding its welcome-back bash for the famous winter-weather prognosticator _ the so-called seer of seers and sage of sages. Legend has it that if the groundhog sees his shadow on Feb. 2, winter will last six more weeks. No shadow means an early spring. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar, File)
PUNXSUTAWNEY, PA (MorichesDaily/AP) – Furry little Punxsutawney Phil came out for Groundhog Day Saturday, but didn’t see his shadow at Gobbler’s Knob in west-central Pennsylvania — nor did his arch rival, Staten Island Chuck.
Legend has it that no shadow means an early spring.
Gobbler’s Knob held its welcome-back bash for the famous winter-weather prognosticator — the so-called seer of seers and sage of sages.
Phil is known as the “seer of seers” and “sage of sages.” Organizers predicted about 20,000 people this weekend, a larger-than-normal crowd because Groundhog Day falls on a weekend this year.
Phil’s got company in the forecasting department.
There’s Staten Island Chuck, in New York; General Beauregard Lee, in Atlanta; and Wiarton Willie, in Wiarton, Ontario, among others noted by the National Climactic Data Center “Groundhog Day” Web page.
“Punxsutawney can’t keep something this big to itself,” the Data Center said. “Other prognosticating rodents are popping up to claim a piece of the action.”
Phil is the original – and the best, Punxsutawney partisans insist.
“We welcome them all. We like the competition,” Deeley said this week.
But Punxsutawney partisans say Phil is the original and the best. The 1993 movie “Groundhog Day” starring Bill Murray brought the Pennsylvania rodent even more notoriety.
Organizers said before about 20,000 people were expected this weekend, a larger-than-normal crowd because Groundhog Day falls on a weekend this year.
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