Massachusetts’ official state groundhog, Ms. G., predicted an early spring Wednesday morning, opposing Punxsutawney Phil who predicted six more weeks of winter at the 136th annual Groundhog Day celebration.
The event took place on Facebook Live at Mass Audubon’s Drumlin Farm Wildlife Sanctuary in Lincoln. It was Ms. G.’s 15th year of forecasting and her eighth as the official state groundhog, officials at Mass Audubon said.
Renata Pomponi, senior regional director of Mass Audubon, described this storied tradition as “a mid-winter chance to be outside, to enjoy thinking about warmer days to come, and to have a little fun.”
Also, she said that the organization thinks of this celebration as a climate action day, serving as a “chance for people to think about how they can take action on behalf of their environment.”
Pomponi said that in the ceremony, Ms. G. — short for groundhog — comes out, has a snack, and then the team decides whether there is a shadow.
“Today, there was no shadow and that, according to legend, means that spring will come early this year,” she said.
And even though New England weather can be unpredictable, Pomponi said that Mass Audubon often considers Ms. G.’s forecast as a good indicator of what’s to come.
“We like to think that Ms. G. — because of her local forecast — is the best predictor of New England weather,” Pomponi said. “But anyone who’s lived here long enough knows that anything could happen — a lot of people that I’ve talked to today have been very excited about the idea of an early spring.”