Gertie The Groundhog's Prediction 2017

Central Illinois keeps an ancient  tradition alive. Groundhog Day, celebrated on February 2nd every year, is technically not a holiday, but it is a fun celebration that dates back to the late 1800's near Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania. While not everyone is a fan of the celebration, Groundhog Day is meant to help take away the "winter blues" during the dead of winter. Groundhog Day is the half way point between the winter solstice and spring equinox---a.k.a. we are half way done with winter! Climatologically speaking, December, January, and February are the coldest months of the year, so chances are we still have a bit more winter to go...regardless of the groundhog's prediction.     

Meteorologist Lauren Rainson spent all morning live at Wildlife Prairie Park in anticipation of "Gertie the Groundhog's" big forecast. Since "Gertie" saw her shadow, we have six more weeks of winter.

Groundhogs average twenty inches long and typically weigh twelve to fifteen pounds. Groundhogs are one of the few animals that truly hibernate. They burrow in a wooded, brushy area that is below the frost line; that way their environment remains at a warm, stable temperature during the winter months.   

Another "Gertie" prediction--The Atlanta Falcons will win Super Bowl 51! Many park-goers were excited about that prediction. 


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