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Sun., 6:30 pm: Groundhogs disagree on forecast

February 2, 2014
By MARGARET THOMPSON , Tribune Chronicle | TribToday.com

Some siblings steal all the spotlight; for groundhog Buckeye Chuck that would be neighboring Punxsutawney Phil, who's immortalized in Bill Murray's never-ending Feb. 2 holiday film.

Pennsylvania isn't the only state to celebrate the quirky holiday of Groundhog's Day every second day of February. Though Punxsutawney is the mecca of what is tagged as "America's second favorite holiday," a couple hundred devotees in Marion don't let Ohio's fuzzy fellow get overshadowed at his yearly appearance.

"I think just because it is fun; people are looking for any excuse to break the cabin fever," said Scott Shawver, event planner and operations manager at Clear Channel Marion radio.

This year, Buckeye Chuck determined spring will be here soon, while his counterpart Phil disagrees. The two have the rest of the year off to both contemplate their recent decision and prepare for next year.

Phil is forecasting six more weeks of what seems like an already very long and cold winter, while Chuck says spring will be here soon since he did not see his shadow.

This is also the first time the Groundhog Dog fell on Super Bowl Sunday.

Last year, in the freezing temperatures, Shawver said about 200 people showed up for the festivities and the main attraction when local dignitaries pull Chuck from his home. Legend has it that if he sees his shadow there will be six more weeks of winter weather; if not there will be an early spring.

"The rest of the year he takes it easy, this time he has the polar vortex to come into play," Shawver said.

Phil saw his shadow on Sunday, meaning winter is expected to last another month-and-a-half, while Chuck saw no shadow, predicting spring will come early.

 
 

 

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