Thousands of revelers were on hand in the town of Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania, about 80 miles northeast of Pittsburgh, to witness Phil's annual prediction on how long the North American winter will last.
A rival groundhog, Staten Island Chuck, predicted spring will be coming early after he did not see his shadow in NY on Friday.
According to a report by History.com, the inception of Groundhog Day can be dated back to an ancient Christian tradition known as Candlemas which consisted of priests giving away candles to the people to use them during the winter season.
Mayor de Blasio famously dropped the Staten Island groundhog during the 2014 ceremony, and it died weeks later. That's the question that will be on everyone's minds as they awake early Friday, which also happens to be Groundhog Day. If Potomac Phil sees his shadow, D.C. can expect to see six more weeks of political gridlock.
The custom is about 130 years old and is celebrated officially in Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania, with a groundhog named Punxsutawney Phil.
On record, Phil has seen his shadow 103 times and no shadow only 18 times (the results were not recorded on ten occasions).
The Groundhog Day legend states that, if Phil sees his shadow, it will send him running back into his burrow...because a longer winter is on the way. When Punxsutawney Phil is not predicting the weather, reportedly lives near the town library with his wife Phyllis. If not, spring comes early.
A rare misstep in 2013, when Woody incorrectly forecast an early spring, prompted an apology from the MI mammal. Germans based upon the convention by looking to the hedgehog as an indicator of climate, the legend goes, and German pilgrims in Pennsylvania later changed to the groundhog.
They even made a movie with Bill Murray about Groundhog Day, called "Groundhog Day" (I know, creativity is their strong suit). Since 1988, the groundhog was "correct" 14 times and "wrong" 16 times.
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