Reporting Sean Adams
NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) –Staten Island Chuck has some good news for winter-weary New Yorkers: an early spring. The city’s own weather-predicting groundhog Charles G. Hogg emerged from his solar-powered home at the Staten Island Zoo and delivered the news of a shorter winter.
This January’s record-breaking snowfall has apparently taken its toll on man and beast alike.
One 5-year-old girl told 1010 WINS’ John Montone she was relieved by the prediction.
“I’m done with winter,” she declared.
Chuck was in agreement with his more famous distant cousin, Punxsutawney Phil, who also forecast an early spring. Phil also predicted that the Pittsburgh Steelers would win the Super Bowl.
Kudos to the rodents for making their predictions despite an ice storm gripping the region. Long Island’s Malverne Mel took the day off due to the weather. Malverne Mel’s Long Island colleague, Holtsville Hal, defied the consensus and dourly predicted another six weeks of winter, reported Mona Rivera of 1010 WINS.
Tradition holds that if the rodent sees its shadow, the winter could last six more weeks.
In 2009, Chuck made headlines for taking a bite out of Mayor Michael Bloomberg. Last year, Bloomberg wore heavy work gloves when he hoisted him up as a precaution.
According to CBS 2′s Pablo Guzman, the origins of the “shadow” story go back to the 1700s, and the arrival of German immigrants to Pennsylvania. According to chuck’s handler at the zoo, they believed that when the groundhog woke from hibernation that would tell them when the time would be right to plant spring crops.
Are you sick of this winter already? Got a message for Chuck? Sound off in the comments section.
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