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Sunday, February 1, 2009

It's GROUND HOG DAY Folks :)

I don't know about your parts, but around here Ground Hog Day is a huge deal.

Yes I am a Canadian, and we have long winters. But part of being a Canadian is having the right to complain about the weather. We complain about our long winters, we complain about our wet springs, and our humid summers, (with a lack of rain) and we complain about our fall being too short. ( I am not too sure if it is a right, or just that we are a pack of complainers) Either way we complain and we talk about the weather to no end.

So, when February 2nd rolls around we wait with baited breath for the news of an early spring from our resident rodent weather predictor.

The myth is if the ground hog sees his shadow there will be six more weeks of winter. If he doesn't see his shadow spring is right around the corner! (probably in about six weeks) Now, in order for him not to see his shadow you will need an overcast day. This was a difficult concept for me to get my head wrapped around. As, I feel a sunny day was more promising of a spring day then an overcast snowy day.

Our ground hog in Ontario is called Willie. Willie resides in Wiarton, thus he is Wiarton Willie.

Wiarton is a small town about three hours from where we live, it is the gateway to the Bruce Penninsula, and is a popular cottage spot. It has the warm waters of Lake Huron on one side and the crystal blue (but cold) waters of Georgian Bay on the other side.

The Bruce Penninsula is where we spent our childhood summers.

There were many activities over the weekend in Wiarton, kicking off on Friday night with a kids dance. Folks, I am sad to say that we have missed out on something that I am sure was comparable to the recent inaugural balls - THE GROUND HOG BALL was held on Saturday night. (I will mark that one down for next year, it was the see and be seen event of the year!)

Checking the weather forecast on Sunday afternoon, it looks promising. The forecast for Monday is overcast, with flurries and a high of -4C. So, all things are lining up for an early spring prediction when that furry rodent pops his head out of his hole.

These are a couple of shots of the beautiful Colpoy's Bay where Wiarton is situated.

The Canadian Press 02/02/2009

WIARTON, Ont. - The deep freeze felt right across the country this winter isn't about to end any time soon, according to some famous prognosticating groundhogs.

A groan arose from a large crowd gathered in Wiarton, Ont., to hear Wiarton Willie's prediction when the furry forecaster made it known there would be six more weeks of winter.

It was clearly not the answer the crowd of about 200 people, some wearing groundhog noses or carrying signs pledging love for Willie, wanted to hear. There were a few cheers at the prospect of a long winter, but most people looked disappointed - and cold - and then shuffled off to work on a Monday morning.

He emerged from his den just after 8 a.m. ET and saw his shadow, which according to groundhog lore, means more winter is in store.

Nova Scotia's Shubenacadie Sam also saw his shadow Monday morning. The groundhog was roused by a town crier and the skirl of bagpipes at the Shubenacadie Wildlife Park, about an hour north of Halifax.

Had they not cast a shadow, as has been the case for Willie the previous four years, it would have signalled an early spring.

No such luck this year, said Mac McKenzie, who founded the Wiarton Willie Festival 53 years ago. He said Willie's never wrong.

"Not Wiarton Willie," said McKenzie, 82. "He always is bang on - and I use the expression bang on loosely, but that's the way it is."

He said he can't argue with the groundhog's gift of foresight, but wishes the pronouncement had been different.

"This has been the worst winter we've had in years," McKenzie said. "Snow, snow and more snow. So we want less snow next year.

Sam and Willie's U.S. cousin, Punxsutawney Phil, also predicted six more weeks of winter when he stepped into the Pennsylvania sunlight.

His forecast was announced in front of thousands of revellers gathered at Gobbler's Knob, about 100 kilometres northeast of Pittsburgh.

German tradition holds that if a hibernating animal casts a shadow Feb. 2 - the Christian holiday of Candlemas - winter would last another six weeks. If no shadow was seen, legend said spring would come early.


Kristina P. said...

I really hope there is no shadow. I am ready for Spring!!

Just A Mom (Call me JAM for short) said...

I'm keeping my fingers crossed! Let it be Spring.

blueviolet said...

It is just so beautiful where you live!

Bee and Rose said...

Here's wishing you an early spring!

And heck with a halfway visit! I'm coming up there! It's gorgeous!


Kate said...

I am hoping for an early spring here in Utah. Thanks for the comments on my blog. I'll be back.

Alicia said...

Wow..I love those last two pictures!!

When I hear "Groundhog Day", I think of that movie with Bill Murray!!

Upstatemomof3 said...

Definitely hoping for an early Spring. :) Happy Groundhog Day!!!

Melissa said...

Here's wishing for an early spring!

hippo chick said...

I am from Pennsylvania where Punxatawney Phil resides. We are sure hoping he sees his shadow tomorrow.

Only four more sleeps until we are off to the sunshine of Nevada.

~hippo hugs~

jamaise said...

Very nice pictures. Like everyone, I hope Willie & Phil see their shadow :)) Is that top pic actually Willie? Is he albino?

Happy Groundhog Day!

Janet said...

Interesting blog today! We have little animals in South Africa and they look EXACTLY the same, but we call them "Dassies" or rock rabbits. They have a light brown fur, but their little faces and bodies are identical!

The Blonde Duck said...

I hope he doesn't see his shadow!

Alyson and Ford said...

Since we moved to Florida, I forget about these important weather predictions.... sorry!
We are having some cool weather, after all, it is winter in "North" Florida.
Enjoyed reading your blog.

Alyzabeth's Mommy for 4.5 Months
Forever Family Day 09/16/08

Debbie said...

I am amused by all things groundhog. How in the world did this little myth even start?

Lara said...

It's pretty overcast where I am today, but who knows about Punxatawney Phil, or whichever groundhog is the deciding factor. I just want spring to come!

Love the pictures...so pretty!

Tasha said...

I live in Michigan so I feel your winter woes...Hers wishing to an early spring and even earlier summer :)

3 Bay B Chicks said...

Such an absolutely fun post. So many are talking about the Super-Bowl today, but I am with you...Give the Groundhog his day. :)


Cascia said...

Sad to hear it will be a long cold winter...if the groundhog is correct anyway. It's going to hit a high of 70 degrees F. out here in Northern California today. I'll have to send you some sunshine!

Mighty M said...

Hi - Happy Groundhogs Day! I tagged you to play a game of photo tag....but my post won't be up until later this afternoon, if you want to play be sure to check it out!

Kelly said...

Yup, we lived right outside of Punxytawny for a LONG time! It was a huge deal! I never did see the good in it. I can't even trust my weatherman half the time... you think I am going to trust a groundhog!! :o) Have a great week!

Lana said...

But I want spring NOW, darnit!! *Pout* *Pout.*

jen@odbt said...

Boo! I was so hoping for the groundhog to not see his shadow. Totally bummed. I just bought some yellow tulips...at least I can have spring inside, right?

ASHLEY said...


Shannon Hartz said...

I can't even imagine, I'm a southern Californian, and it's 85 degress at my house right now - my kids are in shorts and flip-flops:) LOL Shannon www dot thehartzherd dot blogspot dot com

Samantha said...

Thanks for visiting my blog!
I love my scarf, wasn't too expensive and it keeps me top of the morning warm!!

Hope your daughters face isn't too sore now =]


Jenny said...

Thank you for stopping by with a comment. I'd send some warm weather your way if I could!

Just A Mom (Call me JAM for short) said...

Happy Groundhog Day!

Hula's Secret Blog said...

I'm sick of winter!

jamaise said...

I just realized that I said I WANTED them to see their shadow!!! I had it backwards!! I sure hope I didn't jinx it!