Penn State Behrend boasts more than 140 clubs and organizations devoted to interests ranging from 3D printing to pickleball.
But sophomores Abby Miller and Norah Dana thought something was missing from the many offerings.
This past fall, they proposed adding another club — an organization devoted to Groundhog Day.
Miller and Dana began the Groundhog Club in a light-hearted manner that quickly became legitimate. They realized that some students at Behrend, including a friend from Spain, have never heard of Groundhog Day or knew what it entailed.
“I never realized how many students we had at Behrend that weren’t from Pennsylvania,” Dana said. “It was interesting to show people what we’ve been learning about since we were little.”
As Pennsylvania residents, this was a shock to Dana and Miller. The duo, along with some of their friends, decided to spread some education on the February event.
“We were just like, ‘Oh we should make a club and make it serious,’” said Miller. “And I was like, ‘Yeah, that’s funny, let’s do it.’ Then it kind of snowballed and actually happened.”
‘Phil is the only real one’
The Groundhog Club meets about every other week with their 20-25 members.
They discuss topics including imposter weather predicting animals around the country, the history of Groundhog Day and what the day entails.
“The most fun meeting was the imposter meeting,” said Miller. “There’s a duck called Scrambles from New Jersey. There are a bunch of other groundhogs, and there’s this one in D.C. who is … taxidermized and he has a Twitter account. Phil is the only real one.”
The group has been planning a trip to Punxsutawney to see Groundhog Day live in action. This idea sprung in the Fall semester of 2023.
To get to Punxsutawney, the group has been doing some fundraising which included a customized bracelet sale. They have no set fundraising goal but are aiming for just enough to have an enjoyable day with safe travels.
The group is planning on carpooling at midnight because the celebrations begin at 3 a.m. in Punxsutawney. They are excited to see the whole event unfold from the procession to when the officials speak with the groundhog, and to experience the Punxsutawney culture.
You can follow the Groundhog Club and their adventures on Instagram at Behrend_Groundhogclub.
Contact Nicholas Sorensen at [email protected].
First appeared on www.goerie.com