In this podcast episode, John Fenn, Michelle Stefano, and Stephen Winick discuss Groundhog Day traditions. Drawing on the research of Don Yoder, they discuss the history and folklore of the holiday, including groundhog traditions among the Pennsylvania Dutch, weather proverbs, and even cooking and eating groundhogs! There are even four groundhog songs! Find the link to the podcast in this blog post!
Most of us know the tradition: on February 2, our old friend the groundhog will emerge from hibernation, come out of his den, and predict whether winter will deliver more cold weather this year. If the groundhog sees his shadow, the story goes, cold weather will persist another few weeks. If not, warm weather is around the corner. If you like the folklore of holidays, you may be interested to know that Groundhog Day is related to two of the other holidays we have written about extensively on this blog: Halloween and Mayday. In this post, we'll look at the ancient origins of the Groundhog Day tradition in Celtic and Germanic culture. We'll also present two fun groundhog songs from AFC collections, and links to further reading and exploration of this seasonal observance.