Punxsutawney Phil’s forecast: was it right or wrong on start of spring?

PELHAM — For the past three months, we’ve had a cold, harsh winter. There have been many snow days and delayed openings. The snow has piled on top of ice on top of more snow. There have been scary storms coming up and weather changes.

You may remember back on Feb. 2 was Groundhog Day. They say when a groundhog (Punxsutawney Phil) comes out of the dirt, the question is if he sees his shadow. If he does, then it is six more weeks of winter. If he doesn’t, then spring is early. This year, Punxsutawney Phil saw his shadow.

You might think that he was right. I mean, it’s a groundhog that has a day named after him. Why wouldn’t he be right?

Technically, he wasn’t right. On Feb. 2, six weeks would be March 16. But for us, spring started on March 9. That is only five weeks. Punxsutawney Phil’s forecast was incorrect. According to my sources, his forecasts are only correct 39 percent of the time. (Editor’s note: some of our readers have felt it not quite warm enough for spring on certain days between March 9 and 16, but they hadn’t had weeks of indoor recess.)

If you think that he was right, you could think of it this way. Phil’s forecast may have been a week early, but think about this winter. This winter was so harsh and cold, it seemed like six weeks before the warm weather started. This winter was a very different winter than others because it had a huge blizzard forecast, which worked up some nerves and excitement. It also had the coldest day in a decade. Those things made this winter seem longer.

You could also be thinking that Phil was completely wrong. He said it would be six weeks and it wasn’t. It doesn’t matter about the intensity of the winter. On March 9 (instead of March 16th), the grass was uncovered in some places. The snow finally started going away. The weather was above 40 degrees for once. This all had happened earlier than Phil forecast.

Despite all the forecasts, Groundhog Day is a big moment in history. In 1887, the Europeans celebrated the first Groundhog Day. It was an early European tradition, only it was used with a hedgehog. On that date, a news editor called the Punxsutawney Groundhog Club, making Phil America’s most famous groundhog.

So what do you think? Do you think he was completely wrong? Do you think he is right? Do you think it is somewhere in the middle? Leave your comments in the box below.