Weather-predicting groundhog declares an early spring

6:59 PM, Feb 2, 2013   |    comments
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Video: Groundhog declares an early spring

PUNXSUTAWNEY, PA - FEBRUARY 02: Groundhog co-handler Ron Ploucha (2nd L) holds Punxsutawney Phil after Phil didn't see his shadow and predicting an early spring during the 127th Groundhog Day Celebration at Gobbler's Knob on February 2, 2013 in Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania. The Punxsutawney 'Inner Circle' claimed that there were about 35,000 people gathered at the event to watch Phil's annual forecast. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)

PUNXSUTAWNEY, Pa. (AP) - It's Groundhog Day and Punxsutawney Phil has made his prediction. He says to expect an early spring.

With thousands watching on Gobbler's Knob in west-central Pennsylvania, the furry rodent emerged from his lair Saturday but didn't see his shadow.

Legend has it that if the groundhog sees his shadow on Feb. 2, winter will last six more weeks. But if he doesn't see his shadow, spring will come early. At least that's what the Inner Circle says - the group that dons top hats and tuxedos on Groundhog Day each year to oversee the ceremony.

Inner Circle president Bill Deeley says that after "consulting" with Phil, he makes the call in deciphering what the world's most famous groundhog has to say about the weather.

(Copyright 2013 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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