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Mark Your Calendars for Groundhog Day!
Since the early 1800's, onlookers have anxiously awaited the fate of their spring as told by a fuzzy groundhog named Phil. This year, Punxsutawney Phil will scurry out of his burrow at 7:30 a.m. on February 2. Legend says that if Phil sees his shadow, there will be six more weeks of winter. If he doesn't, spring is in the air!
This yearly celebration will be taking place at Gobbler’s Knob in Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania, a short ride away from Lady Luck Casino® Nemacolin! Our casino will be rooting for spring and offering a special Groundhog’s Great Escape promotion to win big! After you say hello to Phil, come on by Lady Luck® and take a chance on this holiday.
The History of Groundhog Day
The legend of this February holiday varies from place to place. The most common origin comes from the era of early Christianity in Europe and a holiday called Candlemas. Members of the clergy would bless candles and hand them out to churchgoers. According to ancient songs and couplets, if the day of Candlemas was bright and fair, winter would continue. However, if the weather was rainy and cloudy, winter would shortly be replaced by spring.
Roman conquests delivered the tradition to Germany and claimed that if a hedgehog cast a shadow on Candlemas day, six more weeks of bad weather would be arriving. Germans began to settle in Pennsylvania and found an abundance of groundhogs, determining that the creatures were sensible and intelligent. Therefore, the wise groundhog could accurately predict the seasons just by seeing his own shadow!
Fun Facts About Groundhogs and Groundhog Day
- Punxsutawney Phil starred alongside Bill Murray in the 1993 movie "Groundhog Day."
- Phil weighs about 20 pounds and is 22 inches long.
- Groundhogs whistle when they are alarmed or if they are looking for a mate.
- Although groundhogs only live six to eight years, according to legend, there has only been one Punxsutawney Phil! Folklore also says that Phil drinks a special elixir every summer which bestows him with seven more years of life.
- The first Gobbler's Knob celebration of Groundhog Day was in 1887.
- Phil was originally called "Br'er Groundhog" and eventually named after King Phillip.
- A group of men called the "Inner Circle" feed and take care of Phil year-round! The Inner Circle wears tuxedos and top hats to show respect for the holiday.
- The Inner Circle also plans special events in Punxsutawney around the holiday. This year includes a Groundhog Ball: Gobbler's Knob Got Talent!, along with Breakfast with Phil.
Groundhog’s Great Escape
Come celebrate Groundhog Day with our staff at Lady Luck. Our Groundhog's Great Escape promotion starts January 29th. Visitors have until February 1st to guess if Punxsutawney Phil will see his shadow on Groundhog Day.
At 7 p.m. on February 2nd, we'll announce 10 lucky participants who have predicted the outcome correctly. The grand prize winner will walk away with $100 in FanPlay® credit. Visitors must be present to win.
Pay homage to the tradition of Groundhog Day and its Pennsylvania roots at our famed casino and nearby historic Punxsutawney. We along with Phil are looking forward to your visit on February 2nd!