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By Terra Dankowski January 31, You read that correctly. Memorial Library. The world knows what Punxsutawney Phil does on February 2. How does he spend his other or days a year? He enjoys his napping and snacking on his favorite foods, which include leafy greens, carrots, cantaloupe, and even Ritz Crackers and Nature Valley granola bars. Who looks after Phil and what does that entail? Does he ever come out of his burrow and sit for storytime? What does Phil mean to the community? How many years has he been living at the library, and has his celebrity helped raise its profile?
Phil means a lot to many different people in Punxsutawney. He means pride, tradition, local history, and community. We get people year-round, from all over the world, who come to see Phil. One was a woman from the South, and she came with her father. They host Groundhog Day parties because everyone has Christmas parties, everyone has Super Bowl parties, so they host the Meet Rich Men Punxsutawney Pennsylvania party every year. After 15 years she finally had a chance to make it up here and meet Phil, so it was an awesome conversation to have. Does the library get a lot of groundhog-specific requests or reference questions during the year?
Do you ever tap the expertise of Meet Rich Men Punxsutawney Pennsylvania Groundhog Club to answer queries? We get a pretty standard slate of questions. Those questions are pretty standard, but if anything oddball comes up, we can just [Katie] or call her. People generally just want to know the same things.
Also, we have Punxsutawney Weather Discovery Center, an interactive museum, since Punxsutawney is known as the weather capital of the world. Each year around this time, they select a weather expert or meteorologist to go into their hall of fame. Has Phil always been a famous figure in your life? What has been your favorite or most unusual Punxsutawney Phil memory or story? I grew up as far northwest as you can get in the state, a town called West Springfield. Being up there close to Lake Erie we experienced all four seasons, so the Weather Channel was like background music in my house.
We grew up knowing about Phil and weather and whatnot, so when I got this job, my mother was very excited.
When I first started here, the other staffers liked to tell me the story of when Phil got out. They had to call the Inner Circle to come get him. Does the staff have any favorites? We have a display of them year-round. We love seeing and reading our groundhog books—the illustrations, the texts—for their depictions and appreciation of our local history. What we would love to see, though, would be a Who Is Punxsutawney Phil?
Unfortunately, no. What book are you currently reading?
What media is Phil currently consuming? With his big day coming, Phil is really focused on giving it his all.
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