Groundhog Day, originated in 1887 was first celebrated in Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania. Groundhog Day is given to the name of the day that it is supposedly possible to predict when Spring will arrive. The tradition of Groundhog Day originated from another holiday in Europe known as Candlemans Day. On this day the church would give out candles for the coming winter, the number of candles represented how long the winter would last. Originally it is thought a hedgehog or a badger was used from the original predictions in Germany. However, when German migrants reached The United Sates of America groundhogs were used as they were a much more common species.
The Groundhogs were used to predict how long winter would last. If the groundhog sees his shadow and does not come out of his burrow, winter would last for six more weeks. If a shadow is not formed and the groundhog came out it therefor meant an early spring.
In 1887, an editor whom belonged to a groundhog hunters group, declared that Phil, the Punxsutawney groundhog was Americas only true weather forecasting groundhog.
Phil, the Punxsutawney groundhog, 2017, predicted a long winter.