I’d almost forgotten today is Groundhog Day. Thanks to fellow blogger Carol Farnsworth for her brief history of this event plus a poem. I haven’t yet heard whether the groundhog saw his shadow today, but I’m sure we’ll find out soon enough.
Since my blog post falls on this strangest of holidays, I decided to delve into the history of this celebration.
The holiday had it’s origin in Germany in the 1600 century. The date marks the midpoint between the winter solstice and the spring equinox. it was initially the time that bears woke from their hibernation . As the bear population decreased, the weather predicting animal changed to a badger.
When German and Dutch settlers came to North America, they brought their tradition to a native animal, The groundhog.
The tradition states if the groundhog sees his shadow he returns to his burrow and there will be 6 more weeks of winter. If the day is cloudy and the shadow is not seen, the prediction is for an early spring.
This holiday has been celebrated in Punxsutawney, PA. since 1886. A local newspaper is credited with starting the holiday.
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