In my Feb. 2005 issue of KaTsZoNe, I wrote about Groundhog Day:
Groundhog Day (Feb. 2), a North American tradition, where the belief that the groundhog can predict whether or not there will be 6 more weeks of bad weather (longer winter) is based on the old European tradition of Candlemas. If it was a sunny Candlemas, it was believed that there would be 6 more weeks of winter. The Germans added the belief that if an animal (initially a hedgehog) was frightened by its shadow on Candlemas, it meant 6 more weeks of winter. This belief was brought to America in the 18th century by German settlers who adopted the groundhog as a weather predictor. I found some Groundhog Carols. They are hilarious! (http://ourworld.cs.com/
I did not get a photo of a groundhog, however, I met Mr. Hedgehog at Purdy's who came all the way from Vancouver, BC (as that is where Purdy's originates). If you've never tried Purdy's chocolates, which includes chocolate hedgehogs, give them a try! There are stores in Fairview Mall, Union station, Upper Canada Mall, Bramalea City Centre, Hillcrest Mall -- I'm obviously a fan and yes, I've been to all those stores so that's how I know they are there!