This Groundhog Day gathering in South Florida was just a tad different than the traditional one in Pennsylvania.
For starters, everyone was in bathing suits. And the groundhog? Let’s just say he looked like a person in a groundhog costume.
This was Groundhog Day, Hollywood-style, right on the beach.
Just like up North, the Hollywood groundhog was escorted by men in tuxedos. But not like up North, everyone then hit the surf for a Groundhog Day swim.
In Pennsylvania, it was 25 degrees on Thursday. Men in black top hats, thick wool jackets and scarves filled the ceremony.
The famously furry Punxsutawney Phil saw his shadow shortly after sunrise. That means six more weeks of winter.
The tradition dates back to the 1800s to determine whether spring will come early or whether winter will hither. NOAA says Groundhog Day originated as an ancient celebration of the midpoint between the winter solstice and spring equinox.
“More winter, Phil told the Washington Post. “ I’m going back to bed.”
The news didn’t startle many on Hollywood beach as the city’s own groundhog roamed the sandy shores. Crowds of nearly naked beachgoers greeted the man in the rodent suit and proudly sang the Star Spangled Banner.
After coming together in song, the crowd dashed into the water and splashed as the sun continued to rise.