Meteorologist Mike Randall, a skeptic of groundhogs, has a theory. Since there are always six more weeks of winter after Groundhog Day, and the concept of early spring in the astronomical sense simply does not exist, then whenever the groundhog sees its shadow and predicts six more weeks of winter, the groundhog is always right, but whenever it predicts an early spring, it is always wrong. Therefore, our beloved North American tradition gives us an approximate 80 percent rate of accuracy, the average percentage of times a groundhog sees its shadow.
Lord of the Shadow Watchers, Czar of the Land Beavers, King of the Rodents, Master of Marmots and the Grand Poobah of Woodchucks is, of course, the one and the only Punxsutawney Phil of Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania.
In fact, many towns that celebrate Groundhog Day throughout our temperate continent have their own burrowing forecasters including, Smith Lake Jake, Staten Island Chuck, Shubenacadie Sam and Wiarton Willie.
The preservation of these regional celebrities is undeniably a display of faith in the power of the groundhog to predict the weather forecast for the next six weeks.
AGA cannot speculate if a groundhog can predict the weather. We can, however, remind consumers that natural gas, come snow or sun, will save you money and energy.
If spring does come early, as Phil seems to believe, you will still enjoy all the comfort and peace of mind that natural gas in the home delivers. Perhaps you will be able to fire up your gas grill a little sooner, which will save you money and energy when cooking.
Or maybe, Phil is wrong and winter will linger. Not to worry, friends. Heating your house with natural gas for the remainder of winter will keep those long hot showers affordable and eco-friendly.
Let us know below what you think of Punxsutawney Phil’s prediction…is it just wishful thinking?