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Groundhog Day


Groundhog Day is an old tradition dated back to 1887, the idea is to predict the incoming weather.

Typically, every Feb. 2, the groundhog comes out of hibernation and if it sees it’s shadow then we can anticipate a longer winter and the groundhog goes back into hibernation, otherwise if there is no shadow then we can expect warmer weather to soon come. People have been using this method of weather determination for many decades and claim it holds to be truthful.  

The old tale began in Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania and then later spread to Canada.

Groundhog is a common name for the ground squirrel also referred to as the Marmota Monax. But more popular names for the animal consist of “woodchuck” or “land beaver” and many other names differing on its location.

Although the tradition started in Pennsylvania, it is best known by people whose ancestors spoke German, specifically those in the Pennsylvania-Dutch area.  

Few people know that Groundhog Day is related to two other holidays, Halloween and Mayday. Groundhog Day is known to have been connected to the cycle of pre-Christian festivals that gave us those two holidays and is also known to be tied to an ancient Christian celebration, Candlemas Day, celebrated in Germany. Like Groundhog Day, on Candlemas Day if it is clear and sunny then it is determined that winter will continue, otherwise they can predict warmer weather.  

Despite the promoters of the festival claiming the animals have never been wrong, with a closer look at the records it has been discovered that the records indicate a correlation of less than 40 percent.

As for Canada, it tends to have a number of groundhogs that determine the weather, the most well-known rendering Wiaton Willie, the pink eyed, white furred creature that appeared on the Bruce Peninsula, northwest of Toronto, since 1956, who is known to be corrected around 90% of the time.  

Many people believe that the implication of Groundhog Day can spread ideas of change due to the fact that the groundhog can simply determine the upcoming change of weather. The holiday is a way to help recognize and pay attention to the everyday patterns we see in life that can be easily missed. And it is certainly a reason for people to all come together and something to bond over.  

In conclusion I predict that the groundhog will not see its shadow this year and that warmer whether will soon come judging by the warmer weather rolling in now.

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About the Contributor
Kaylee Arnaz
Kaylee Arnaz, Reporter
Kaylee Arnaz is a 17-year-old senior at Tracy High School. She has gone to Tracy High School for all four years and is excited about college options. She lives with her family of four, including her little brother who is a freshman at Tracy High School, and she has eight animals who she loves endlessly. In her free time, she often enjoys hanging out with her animals, graphic designing, and cooking. She has over 2,000 edits of both pictures and videos and cooks a variety of foods daily. She enjoys hanging out with her friends and doing all sorts of things. Arnaz is currently taking online college courses to prepare for her college career. She is very adventurous and loves to go camping and prefers the outdoors. But her favorite thing of all is spending time with her family, whether it's cooking, watching television or playing board games.  

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