Sammie Says More Winter Ahead

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KRESGEVILLE -- Punxsutawney Phil predicted an early spring this morning when he did not see his shadow.

The famous groundhog made his prediction early Tuesday on Gobblers Knob in western Pennsylvania

In the Poconos, it was an entirely different weather outlook.

Before the sun even came up in Kresgeville, Groundhog Lodge Number 6 got the groundhog ready to make her annual prediction.

About 30 to 40 people gathered in close for the Pennsylvania Dutch tradition.

But Sammie the Groundhog isn't moving at all.

"You think she's frozen don't you? Well, we used to have a live groundhog but they're hard to keep in captivity," explained lodge president Lee Haas.

Sammie is stuffed and has been for about the last half dozen Groundhog Day ceremonies behind Cherry's Sunset Diner.

So instead, they talk to the groundhog in Dutch, and the lodge president interprets.

"The groundhog said we're going to have six more weeks of winter, so keep the shovel handy."

Sammie also predicted 2016 will be a good year, not bad for a stuffed animal.

"I would imagine a live groundhog would be a little harder to get a prediction out of," said Michael Montanari of Allentown.

This annual tradition doesn't end with Sammie's prediction. Lodge members like to head in and have breakfast in Kresgeville to debate whether or not the groundhog was right. Inside, over hot coffee, six more weeks of winter doesn't sound so bad.

"Because I can play in the snow and make more snowmen," said 7-year-old Noah Faust.

Not everyone agrees.

"Ugh, I could use some better news than that, but what are you going to do?" asked Montanari.

It's all in good fun, and after 66 years, lodge members admit the groundhog might not always get it right.

"Sometimes she gets messed up, you know, like the weatherman. I mean Tom Clark wouldn't agree with this," Haas said.

Click here to take our Groundhog Day Quiz!


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