The mayor of Sun Prairie, Jonathan Freund, presented Jimmy during the Groundhogs Day ceremony and was bittern in the ear by the groundhog. He then declared there would be an early spring.I bet Mayor Freund won't let a groundhog whisper in his ear ever again.
Jimmy's caretakers, Jerry and Maria Hahn, told News 3 that the mayor got it wrong and that there would be six more weeks of winter.
The tradition of Groundhog Day states that if it is cloudy when the groundhog emerges from its burrow, spring will come early. If it?s sunny, the groundhog will see its shadow and retreat to its burrow, meaning winter will last six more weeks.
The News 3 Weather Center reported clear skies Monday morning.
A statement from the city of Sun Prairie states that Jimmy whispered his prognostication to the mayor.
"While tradition holds that only the mayor can translate Jimmy's prediction and that a clear sky generally means Jimmy sees his shadow and that winter will go on for six more weeks, the mayor's translation this morning was clearly for an early spring. The break with tradition is unusual, but not unprecedented."
In the statement, Director of Economic Development Neil Stechschulte said, "We count on Jimmy to actually predict the weather…not just have an automated response based on current weather conditions like other groundhogs across the country. After a back and forth conversation with Jimmy this morning, the mayor clearly confirmed Jimmy’s call for winter ending early."