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SM South News

the student news source of shawnee mission south

SM South News

the student news source of shawnee mission south

SM South News

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Groundhog Day signals coming spring

Beloved Phil predicts spring will come six weeks early

Groundhog Day is today, Feb 2. This holiday surrounds Punxsutawney Phil, the official weather-telling groundhog residing in Young Township near Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania. 

It is said in folklore, every year, Phil retracts from his burrow and his handlers help him onto a stump. The president of the inner circle allegedly speaks ‘Groundhogese’ to Phil and interprets the message by telling the vice president to show one of two scrolls to the broadcasting news. 

“[Groundhog day] is just kind of silly really. Like does it work finding how many days of winter, is just a kind of myth,” sophomore Ava Bermond said. 

In regards to the truth about Phil’s prediction, Kathleen Thomas, a biology and earth and science teacher, said, “In general, it’s a pretty false assumption. I think perhaps, it’s just for fun. And then we see how the weather goes.” 

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According to the weather forecast, it was highly unlikely that Phil would see his shadow, meaning a predicted early spring. 

As shown by news sources, this has proved to be true.

This is the first time in four years that Phil has not seen his shadow. 

A few days ago, PETA sent a letter to the Punxsutawney Groundhog Club with a proposal. PETA recommends substituting Phil for a giant coin to avoid exploiting the shy and solitary animal. Regardless of these claims, the inner circle continues to hold the tradition true. 

“I don’t think that Phil is mistreated. I don’t think it’s a case of mishandling an animal,” Environmental Education teacher Derek Berg said. “I think he is treated as well as our cat here in the building and the other animals we have here in our building.”

The Groundhog Club Hosted Events schedule shows the national tradition will proceed as usual on Thursday, Feb 1, 2024. 

Yesterday they hosted an event titled: Gobbler’s Knob Got Talent. From 1:00 pm-2:30 pm.

This was an open-judged talent show, where those entering perform and two finalists will be chosen to perform at Gobbler’s Knob on Groundhog Day morning to be voted on at the Celebration. This year’s finalists are Garret Rowan, a local musician who performed a riff on Stevie Wonder’s “Superstition” titled “Prognostication,” and Trina and Hannah Jones, a mother and daughter duo from Atwell, Western Australia, who performed groundhog-ified versions of songs from “Mamma Mia!”

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About the Contributor
Hailey Godke, Reporter
Hailey Godke is a freshman and a new reporter. She can be found reading and writing or solving puzzles in the library.

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