So, here’s the rest of the story…we toured around Punxsutawney all day on Saturday buying souvenirs and generally acting touristy. The town undoubtedly makes a good bit of money during this celebration and that is cool. We enjoyed seeing the sights but headed in a little early because we knew we had to be up early for the real celebration. You see, bus tickets to Gobbler’s Knob go on sale starting at 2am, February 2. I knew my family wouldn’t follow me quite that early so we opted to sleep in until 3:30 am. At 3:30, we hopped up (I did anyhow) and headed to one of the bus stops. I was shocked. I mean, there were a number of people around on Saturday, but the crowd was amazing for the real show.
The powers-that-be had done it right though…there were a metric crap-ton of buses shuttling people the 1.5 or so miles from town up to the Knob. We got there sometime early…I can’t remember exactly when, but early enough to get a pretty good spot, not too far back from Phil’s burrow-of-prediction. It was still dark and had started to rain. It was still rain but it was that cold rain, just above freezing that is so pleasant. When we got there, the crowd was large but little did we know…
Some of the members of the Inner Circle were there keeping the crowd excited and they did a heck of a job. When you see it all on TV, they look sort of formal, but let me tell you, they know how to have a good time. I mean, they wee singing and dancing and telling funny stories. Honestly, I see why Phil trusts them so much. They are good people for making this weekend a success!
At some point, they had a band come on and play some music…and then some dancers…and them more music and singing…and then some pretty cool fireworks. Time is sort of a blur but we had a good time. More and more people showed up as time went on though and it got extremely crowded. We honestly had to shove back against people to keep from being knocked over or otherwise moved from our position. Being a jerk, I am pretty well disposed to that anyhow, but I do not think Emily or the kids enjoyed that part too much.
Sadly, this isn’t really a kid-friendly affair. For too many people, it was an excuse to get dunk and act stupidly. I am all for a good time, but my only complaint is that the powers-that-be didn’t jerk people out of the crowd by their ears when they started acting like total morons. Oh well, such is life and my kids already knew all those bad words anyhow (thanks to their Mom of course).
Anyhow, the Inner Circle finally retrieved Phil from his den. The President of the Inner Circle, the only human able to translate Groundhogese discussed with Phil his outlook and declared that Phil saw his shadow thus guaranteeing 6 more weeks of winter.
Now I never doubt Phil…after all, he is the Seer of Seers and the Prognosticator of Prognosticators, but I was a little disappointed in his prediction. I cannot be selfish however, as he is merely the bringer of news. And based on how things are looking, I’d say he was spot on (as usual)!