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Ephrata’s Cocalico Cal declares start of spring

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As the world waits with baited breath for word on our weather fate, today is the day groundhogs everywhere have been waiting for.

Every February 2nd, the furry forecasters rise and shine to tell the masses if Spring has sprung or to bundle up for six more weeks of winter.

The most famous, of course, is Punxsutawney Phil, but there’s something about Ephrata’s Cocalico Cal that sets him apart from all of the other weather predicting whistle-pigs.For the 11th year in a row, anxious crowds gathered at Ephrata Park to hear Cal’s esteemed opinion on what to expect for the next six weeks.

“Basically, it comes down to me not wanting to go back into my hole because it’s so cold. Spring is here, that’s what I say, and usually it happens,” Cal said.

Although some first-timers were a bit taken aback by the 200-pound groundhog, everyone was overjoyed as Cal declared the official end of winter.

“Cocalico Cal is still number one and he said spring is right around the corner,” exclaimed Michael Riffert of the Lincoln Lodge of the Maximus Marmot.