February 02, 2001
Although Phil seems a bit grim, Punxsutawney, PA is a festive place on Groundhog's Day. That furry prognosticator, Punxsutawney Phil, can't help but see his shadow. As soon as he pokes his little head out of the ground, he's flooded with light from all of the TV crews and the flash bulbs of his faithful followers, who trek up Gobbler's Knob each year at dawn on February 2. Actually, 364 days a year, old Phil lives on Easy Street - in a climate-controlled exhibit in the Punxsutawney Library. Though his forecasting skills are dubious at best, Groundhog's Day in Punxsutawney has become a tradition over the years. Only in America, would thousands of people hike up a big hill at daybreak to see a woodchuck and his formally-attired entourage, followed by fireworks and champagne, with "Old Glory" waving in the background. The celebration goes on even if Phil forecasts six more weeks of winter, meaning he sees his shadow, which, in fact, he did this morning.