To the unfamiliar, Groundhog Day is perhaps one of America’s weirdest traditions. Every Feb. 2, people wait for a large, furry rodent to see his shadow and then we predict the weather based on the animal’s actions.
The idea of Groundhog Day comes from an ancient Christian celebration known as Candlemas Day, which marked the midpoint between the winter solstice and the spring equinox, according to the National Centers for Environmental Information. On Candlemas Day, clergy would bless candles needed for winter and distribute them to the people, the Punxsutawney Groundhog Club’s website says. Superstition held that if the day was sunny and clear, people could expect a long, rough winter, but if the sky was cloudy, warm weather would arrive soon.
In 1886, the Punxsutawney Spirit newspaper printed the first news of a Groundhog Day observance. The next year, everything fell into place. The Punxsutawney Groundhog Club celebrated for the first time at Gobbler’s Knob, according to the newspaper’s editor declared that Phil, the Punxsutawney groundhog, was America’s official weather-forecasting groundhog.
Here in Southwest Florida the groundhog's prediction doesnt really effect our weather. Whether he or she predicts a longer winter or shorter, it will be near 80 degrees here either way. If you want to build in Southwest Florida, and enjoy the 80s next Groundhog Day, call Nova Homes of South Florida at 239.307.6116 or visit www.novahomesbuilder.com.