Punxsutawney Phil predicts 6 more weeks of winter after seeing his shadow at virtual ceremony

Due to the pandemic, this year's event went completely virtual.

February 2, 2021, 7:32 AM

Punxsutawney Phil, Pennsylvania's most famous groundhog, awoke this morning to see his shadow which means that -- according to legend -- there will be six more weeks of winter.

This year, however, due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, the pomp and circumstance all went virtual meaning that the thousands of revelers who gather every Feb. 2 in the town of Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania, to see whether or not the famous groundhog sees his shadow were not there in person to celebrate.

Instead, people were able to log on and listen to winter- and spring-inspired Spotify playlists while also learning how to make Wigle Whiskey cocktails and at-home crafts, including the official cookie of Groundhog Day, according to the Associated Press.

Legend has it that if he sees his shadow then winter will continue for another six weeks but if Punxsutawney Phil does not see his shadow spring will come early.

PHOTO: FILE - In this Feb. 2, 2020, file photo, Groundhog Club co-handler Al Dereume holds Punxsutawney Phil, the weather prognosticating groundhog, during the 134th celebration of Groundhog Day on Gobbler's Knob in Punxsutawney, Pa.
FILE - In this Feb. 2, 2020, file photo, Groundhog Club co-handler Al Dereume holds Punxsutawney Phil, the weather prognosticating groundhog, during the 134th celebration of Groundhog Day on Gobbler's Knob in Punxsutawney, Pa.
Barry Reeger/AP

“Whether you're hoping for six more weeks of winter fun or an early spring, we could all use some extra happiness this year,” said Pennsylvania Tourism Office department spokesperson Carrie Lepore in a release.

Phil's actual prediction takes place ahead of time in a place called Gobbler's Knob, a small hill just outside of the town, and has done so each year since 1887. 2021 marks the 135th time the event has occurred, according to the Pennsylvania Tourism Office.

Phil's predictions have been fairly even over the past six years from 2015 to 2020 with the groundhog predicting a longer winter three times and an early spring three times. But overall, dating back to 1887, according to the Associated Press, Phil has predicted six more weeks of winter more than 100 times making this year's prognostication a return to normal after last year's prediction of an early spring.

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