Punxsutawney Phil Says: More Winter

He sees his shadow, meaning 6 more weeks of hats and gloves
By Kate Seamons,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 2, 2012 7:08 AM CST
In this file photo from Feb. 2, 2011, Punxsutawney Phil, the weather predicting groundhog, is seen on his stump during the annual Groundhog Day festivities in Punxsutawney, Pa.   (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic/FILE)
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(Newser) – Punxsutawney Phil made his 126th prediction this morning on Gobbler's Knob, and it looks like you shouldn't break out the flip flops just yet. The groundhog saw his shadow this morning, signaling six more weeks of winter—or, depending on where you live, six weeks of winter. The AP notes that the season has brought very little snow and only a few extremely cold days to much of the East. Indeed, New York City hit a high of 63 degrees yesterday.

The AP notes that the whole thing is a bit of a sham: Phil's prediction is actually decided ahead of time by the Inner Circle, a group decked out in top hats and tuxedos that decides in advance whether he'll see his shadow. And he generally does. According to existing records, Phil has now seen his shadow 100 times and hasn't seen it just 16 times since 1886. (And, just because it's amusing, click to read 12 things you didn't know about the movie Groundhog Day.)

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