If you follow the blog, you know that Laura and Mary and I went to Punxsutawney PA February 2nd to see Phil the Groundhog predict six more weeks of winter!
Groundhog Day has always been a favorite holiday in my family. The celebration breaks up the winter and dreary February days.
It’s a holiday where no cards or gifts are necessary.
Last week on Spring Break, Mary and I took a short (12 mile) side trip to Woodstock Illinois where they filmed the movie Groundhog Day in 1993.
We drove around a bit, walked around the town square and had a nice coffee (see below). Mary is back in New York City and I am back in Pittsburgh now but wanted to share our quick visit to the scene of Groundhog Day movie, Woodstock, Illinois.
the town square
The Opera House served as the Pennsylvania Hotel in the movie
Groundhog Days are celebrated in February!
Mary found this place Ethereal Confections
The most delicious method of making coffee
Our server came out to the place we were sitting and brought us two samples of delicious chocolates, made on the premises
A highlight of our visit to Woodstock Illinois
We haven’t really had a winter yet so at dawn, if Punxsutawney Phil sees his shadow, it won’t be surprising to hear there’ll be 6 more weeks of winter. I heard that Punxsutawney schools are closed on February 2nd for Groundhog’s Day. It’s a great holiday to celebrate. No gifts. Thursday night I will serve Groundhog Chicken from the NYTimes, late 1980’s recipe which is browned chicken in orange sauce with ginger, cinnamon, Tabasco and slivered almonds served with CousCous and some garlic green beans. I own cooky cutters in the shapes of Groundhogs, a large and a small, but did not make time to roll dough and cut out cookies to bake.
If you want to watch the Groundhog News or see the Live Webcast, click HERE and if I get a chance I will update what the furry prognosticator declares. UPDATE at 7:20 AM Phil the Groundhog saw his shadow. Six more weeks of winter!!
There is such a wonderful Chicago tour written by Chicago John on the Cardboardmetravels blog that I am not going to bump it off the other blog with today’s groundhog photo. You have read many of his comments on my blog and you may have clicked on his link from the Bartolini Kitchens to read his stories of childhood memory and the preparation of heirloom Italian recipes.
In 1990, three years before Groudhog Day (Bill Murray movie) hit the theaters and everyone had heard about Phil the Groundhog in Punxsutawney, my sister flew out from NYC to Pittsburgh. In the middle of a foggy night, we drove to Punxsutawney for the event. Mary wrote postcards and mailed them so they would have the February 2nd postmark from Punxsutawney. We had a fun day although it was freezing in the woods and all felt a bit strange. You’ve seen Nativity scenes and Santa in yards at Christmas? Well, the residents have GROUNDHOGS on their lawns. Big wooden cutout groundhogs. We experienced the occasion and I guess it could have been something on a bucket list if we had one. Visit Gobbler’s Knob at least once in your life!
So a single post for Groundhog’s Day and here is my Groundhog Folkmanis Puppet holding the original Flat Ruthie in the backyard after school and I will take some license and say he is looking for his shadow? Only problem is the time of day.
Happy Groundhog’s Day. A friend sent an email of a groundhog finding a Lombardi trophy as a shadow.
You can click here for all the serious information from the official website in Punxsutawney PA.
I hear there are some competitors around the country but Phil lives close by …. “If Candlemas be fair and clear, there’ll be two winters in the year.” or this poem from Wikipedia “In Scotland the tradition may also derive from an English poem:
As the light grows longer
The cold grows stronger
If Candlemas be fair and bright
Winter will have another flight
If Candlemas be cloud and rain
Winter will be gone and not come again
A farmer should on Candlemas day
Have half his corn and half his hay
On Candlemas day if thorns hang a drop
You can be sure of a good pea crop