Once again Punxsutaweny Phil wakes up to crawl out of his hole and see his shadow fall on Gobbler’s Knob. As we all know that means six more weeks of cold weather. On record totaling 131 predictions, Phil has seen his shadow a total of 113 times and only 18 times was met with cloudy days. But why are we looking to a rodent for the weather?
Originally, the idea started with Candlemas day. It is an ancient Christian celebration which marked the midpoint between the winter solstice and the spring equinox. The clergy would bless candles needed for winter and distribute them to the people. Superstition held that if the day was sunny and clear, people could expect a long rough winter, but if the sky was cloudy, warm weather would arrive soon.
The Germans then expanded on this tradition, introducing the hedgehog. They believed that if the sun appeared and the hedgehog saw his shadow, there would be six more weeks of bad weather, or a “second winter”. Many of Pennsylvania’s early settlers were German, and they brought this tradition with them to the new world. The groundhog was easier to find then the hedgehog, so the groundhog was adopted. In 1886” The Punxsutawney Spirit” newspaper printed the first news of the Groundhog Day observation.
How accurate are his forecasts? Since 1988 Phil has only been correct about 46% of the time, however Chuck at Staten Island is accurate 80%. Meanwhile back In Marshall Mo., for most people in the Marshall and Sedalia area the first signs of springs are the crocus peeking through the ground and the birds waking us up with their songs. But, for Toliver Painting and Refinishing it’s when we start getting calls coming in from the husbands that have been handed their honey do list or at least anticipating it.
It will not be long until our books are full of interior & exterior painting, parking lot stripping, epoxy flooring and tub refinishing jobs. Chad, Roger, and Greg, our team leaders, are excited to start working out of doors and so are their crews. Interior painting is good but nothing beats exterior painting.