This weekend, the groundhogs peeking out of their burrows will have more to contend with than predicting the next six weeks of weather. They'll also be competing for attention on Super Bowl Sunday.
Last year's event in Dover Township to see Dover Doug give his prognostication was very well attended, said Kristal Kennedy, the township's director of parks and recreation. Between 300 and 400 people attended the Saturday morning pancake breakfast, complete with the winter forecast from the groundhog, actually a person in costume.
Kennedy said weekend events are typically well-attended, but said she's a little concerned those numbers will drop because the holiday falls on Super Bowl Sunday.
She's afraid some attendees might opt to sleep in so they're rested for their football viewing parties, instead of attending the 7 a.m. Dover Doug appearance at the log house in Dover Community Park.
Game-day decisions: For those who care more about breakfast than football — or have the energy for both — the township will provide a pancake breakfast from 7:30-10 a.m. at the Dover Community Building following the prognostication.
There is incentive to watch Dover Doug's traditional interpretive dance: Kennedy said people who attend will receive tickets for free admission to the breakfast.
For others who stay in bed a little longer, tickets to the breakfast in advance are $5 for adults, $3 for children ages 3 to 12 and free for children 2 and under. At the door, tickets are $8 for adults and $5 for children ages 3 to 12.
Dover Doug participates in other community events throughout the year, and will most likely visit Leib Elementary in the following week to talk with kindergarten students about the habits of groundhogs, Kennedy said.
Other event: Another local groundhog will also make his prognostication Sunday morning. "Poor Richard," the stuffed groundhog of The York Slumbering Groundhog Lodge, will make his weather predictions at sunrise.
Poor Richard will make his predictions for the 86th year during the ceremony, which will also include the annual reciting of the Groundhog pledge and the induction of new groundhog lodge members.
A pre-ceremony gathering begins inside the Elks Lodge at 6:30 a.m. The ceremony at sunrise will begin around 7:15 a.m. in the rear of the lodge, located at 223 N. George St. in York. The event is open to any community-minded individual who is a member of the Elks Lodge #213 or anyone who is interested in joining the organization.
— Reach Nikelle Snader at email@example.com.