Local News

Sir Walter Wally: Spring will come soon

Posted February 2, 2016

— With temperatures near 70 degrees Monday, some may have forgotten that it is still winter, but groundhog Sir Walter Wally determined Tuesday afternoon that spring is on its way.

When Wally emerged at the N.C. Museum of Natural Sciences’ 19th annual Groundhog Day celebration, he did not see his shadow, predicting an early end to winter.

According to legend, if a groundhog sees his shadow on Feb. 2, there will be six more weeks of winter. In the past, Wally has more frequently predicted longer winters as opposed to the early arrival of spring.

“I am looking forward to hearing what Wally has to whisper to me about the coming of spring,” said N.C. Department of Natural and Cultural Resources Secretary Susan W. Kluttz. “My fingers are crossed that the day will be cloudy so that Wally does not see his shadow. I am ready for warmer weather.”

Since 1998, Wally has made the right prediction 55 percent of the time, said a press release from the N.C. Museum of Natural Sciences. By comparison, Punxsutawney Phil has been correct 33 percent of the time, they said.

Beginning at 9 a.m., visitors can take advantage of educational stations, as well as games and activities. For kids under the age of 6, there will be a story time session as well as several chances to meet animals. Visitors will also have an opportunity to pose for pictures with Sir Walter Wally following the shadow ceremony.


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  • William Price Feb 3, 2016
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    everyone will take weather predictions from a rodent but deny climate change from scientists....smh

  • Brenda Love Feb 2, 2016
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  • John Snow Feb 2, 2016
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    When are they going to build the ra-eiffel tower or the ra-empire state building?

  • Lynn Brearley Feb 2, 2016
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    Oh for Pete's sake!