Groundhog Day is a new favorite holiday of mine. Ever since moving to Pennsylvania, I just eat it up. And now that I have a preschooler and a toddler, there is so much that we can do to celebrate on this otherwise ordinary winter day.
The night before, I drove out to my mom's house to borrow a couple of her Groundhog Day books. After breakfast, the boys and I read through them to get the gist of the folklore. We also watched a Groundhog Day episode of Max and Ruby where they are watching for "East Bunny Hop Bill's" shadow. :)
Then for our mid-morning snack, we munched on some chocolate groundhogs.
They were gone awfully quick. ;)
The little guys and I got dressed and packed up the car for an adventure.
We met Daddy (who had a couple of free hours at work) at "Punxy Phil's Cakes and Steaks". I'm certain it's this restaurant's biggest day of the year, but we didn't have trouble getting seated. We filled up on chocolate chip pancakes.
There's a groundhog mural behind me, and the windows have some designs too :)
After leaving the restaurant, we headed to Gobbler's Knob. I used to picture Gobbler's Knob as being in the center of the town square (like it is in the movie), but instead, it's a few miles out of town in the middle of the country.
Yesterday was the 130th Anniversary of Groundhog Day in Punxsutawney!
Ice sculptures left over from the morning festivities.
This is the spot where they announced, "There is no shadow to be cast. An early spring is my forecast!"
Before he made his national weather prediction, it looks like Phil was eating Ritz crackers and spinach leaves :)
We had the place to ourselves, which was kind of surreal because hours before from this vantage point, there were thousands of people, and it looked like this:
(taken from Washington Post)
From Gobbler's Knob, we drove over to the town square to visit the library where Phil lives for the other 364 days of the year.
Peering in at the groundhog.
Apparently Phil hadn't returned yet, but his wife Phyllis was cozied up in her nest. (Can you spot her?) We let Nolan and Ephraim believe that she was Phil.
Punxsutawney has around 30 colorful, themed groundhog statues. Nolan was so excited to spot some of them as we were driving. In this photo, he's telling me that he's counted SIX ;)
Getting a better view of Phyllis inside of the library.
On our way home, Ephraim fell asleep when we turned into our neighborhood. Then once I got him in his bed, he refused to take his usual 2-3 hour nap. So with him awake, the three of us did some groundhog coloring and crafts.
All in all, it was a very happy Groundhog Day :)