More than 15,000 People Are Signed Up to Get Punxsutawney Phil's Groundhog Day Forecast Via Text Message; Still Time to Join the Fun

Jan 27, 2010, 15:28 ET from Pennsylvania Department of Community & Economic Development

HARRISBURG, Pa., Jan. 27 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Since it was announced two weeks ago that Punxsutawney Phil would 'text' his Groundhog Day forecast, more than 15,000 fans of the world-famous prognosticator have signed up to receive that alert.

To sign up to receive Phil's forecast, text "groundhog" to 247365 before Feb. 2. After the initial text message, participants will be invited to submit their e-mail address to receive additional tourism-related messages. Standard text messaging rates apply.

"Punxsutawney Phil will make history this year by text-messaging his faithful followers – a feat that was inconceivable on the first Groundhog Day celebration more than 120 years ago," said Mickey Rowley, deputy secretary for tourism at the Department of Community and Economic Development. "We are thrilled to have heard from 15,000 fans but feel certain Phil's universe of followers is bigger. You have until Feb. 2 to become a part of history."

In addition to a text notification, a Webcast of the Groundhog Day festivities will be available at www.visitPA.com/groundhog, including links to Punxsutawney Phil-related videos on YouTube.

In a tradition dating to the late 19th century, Groundhog Day is celebrated each Feb. 2 in Punxsutawney, Jefferson County; about 80 miles northeast of Pittsburgh in the Pennsylvania Wilds. According to folklore, if the groundhog emerges in the early morning and sees his shadow, there will be six more weeks of wintry weather. If he does not see his shadow, there will be an early spring.

The Pennsylvania Tourism Office, under the state Department of Community and Economic Development, is dedicated to inspiring travel to the State of Independence. For more information, go to visitPA.com or call (800) VISIT PA; become a fan at facebook.com/visitPA, follow us at twitter.com/visitPA, share photos at flickr.com/visitPA, or watch us on youtube.com/visitPA. For a free subscription to Pursuits Magazine, go to visitPA.com/pursuits.

Media contact: Michael Chapaloney, 717-720-1301

Editor's Note: For Pennsylvania tourism story ideas: twitter.com/patourismpr.

SOURCE Pennsylvania Department of Community & Economic Development



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