Steven graduated Cum Laude from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Mass Communications, focusing on film studies, journalism and theatre arts. Dubbed a "prolific" writer by Hollywood icon Kenneth Johnson (The Incredible Hulk, V, The Bionic Woman, Alien Nation), Steven has been honored by the Arkansas College Media Association for his story writing prowess. He has also received recognition for his dramatic writing from the Eerie, Shriekfest and Screamfest horror film festivals. Publications include: Carroll County News, Saline Courier, Forum, Echo and Moroch.
With clear skies and a temperature of 2 degrees, thousands of faithful Phil fans converge on Gobbler's Knob to welcome their favorite, furry meteorologist. Yes, Punxsutawney Phil prepares to predict the next six weeks of weather, and the fate of Old Man Winter, as the most famous of all woodchucks searches for his trusty shadow on this 2019 Groundhog Day.
Fans have been celebrating since Saturday, January 26 with the opening festivity of crowning the Little Mr. and Miss Groundhog. And 3 a.m. EST this morning marks the beginning of the pinnacle moment for the 133rd party at Gobbler's Knob as the masses gather in the bitter cold of Pennsylvania.
Enjoy all the fun from the warmth and comfort of your homes, as the event is streamed live online at https://visitpa.com/groundhog-day-live-stream/ If you're only interested in seeing the groundhog himself, don't expect Phil to make his appearance until sunrise at approximately 7:26 a.m.
Lucky enough to be in PA? Below you will find today's complete schedule for more fun at the Punxsutawney Party, which includes 9 a.m. and 11 a.m. screenings of the 1993 film Groundhog Day starring Bill Murray. Today's celebrations conclude with the Groundhog Ball from 8 p.m. - midnight. In addition to today's schedule, check out The Legend of Punxsutawney Philand several videos (below).
THE LEGEND OF PUNXSUTAWNEY PHIL
Groundhog Day was founded from the traditions of the Romans, who carried the myth to the Germans during the Roman invasions many centuries ago. The story was also based on this Scottish couplet: If Candlemas Day is bright and clear, There’ll be two winters in the year. Candlemas Day is celebrated each year on February 2nd. It was determined that if any animal came out from its underground hibernation on that day, and the sun was out, there would be six more weeks of winter.
Thus, was born the tradition of the “two winters” or the “second winter.” What began as a tale from ancient times became fact in the early 1880s. A group of residents in Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania, decided to celebrate Candlemas Day by going to the woods in search of a groundhog. In 1886, the editor of the local newspaper named the group the Punxsutawney Groundhog Club. The Club deemed a certain hilltop near the town as “Gobbler’s Knob” proclaiming that, from this knob, Punxsutawney Phil could accurately forecast the weather. On February 2nd, 1887, the first official trek to Gobbler’s Knob was made and Punxsutawney Phil delivered his first official weather forecast.
The Punxsutawney groundhog, known as Phil rose to fame throughout the world. Known as the “Seer of Seers”, Punxsutawney Phil’s forecast on February 2nd is recorded in the Congressional Records held in the National Archives and the Library of Congress in our nation’s capital. As news coverage of Punxsutawney Phil’s forecasts became more widespread, so did the interest in the legend.
In July 1966, Gobbler’s Knob was officially opened year-round to the public. In 1986, Punxsutawney Phil and members of the Groundhog Club journeyed to Washington, D.C., to visit President Ronald Reagan at the White House. In 1993, the movie Groundhog Day, starring Bill Murray, became a smash hit at theaters.
Today, the popularity of Groundhog Day continues to grow. As February 2nd approaches each year, the town of Punxsutawney comes alive with special events, celebrations, and fun; thousands of visitors attend the annual trek to see Punxsutawney Phil reveal his forecast.