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It’s almost time for Okanagan Okie to come out of hibernation.
On Feb. 2 at 10:15 am, the yellow-bellied marmot will check for a shadow at the Allan Brooks Nature Centre (ABNC) to determine if spring will come early or if winter will last another six weeks.
Okanagan Okie, who made his inaugural appearance last year, will be “trained, buffed and ready for the day,” while the other marmots remain in hibernation, according to the ABNC.
If the sun is shining and the mascot sees a shadow when he emerges from his burrow, the next six weeks will be spent in winter, but if it’s cloudy and Okie doesn't see a shadow, spring will arrive earlier.
“It’s a chance to get outside, share some laughs and celebrate the coming of spring while enjoying the outdoors,” the ABNC writes on social media.
There will be hot chocolate and a bonfire for attendees to enjoy, as well as a livestream for those wanting to watch from home.
Groundhog Day is on Feb. 2 because the date falls between the winter solstice and spring equinox, making it the ideal time to consider whether spring will arrive early.
For more information, visit abnc.ca.