York County Groundhog Day Celebrations & Actvities!

By Sarah Frane Macaroni Kid York January 21, 2024

Feb. 2 is one of Americas weirdest holidays Groundhog Day! 

Groundhog Day was first observed in America on February 2, 1887, in Punxsutawney, PA.  The History Channel says that the first mention of Groundhog Day in the United States that historians can find is a newspaper article in which an editor, who belonged to the "Punxsutawney Groundhog Club," wrote that Phil, the Punxsutawney groundhog, was America’s only true weather-forecasting groundhog. However, Groundhog Day actually originated in Germany. Germans used a hedgehog to "predict" the weather on Candlemas Day, a Christian holiday celebrated on February 2nd each year. Germans who immigrated to Pennsylvania brought the tradition with them, but -- lacking a hedgehog -- used a groundhog instead. Legend has it that if the groundhog sees his/her shadow, we will have 6 more weeks of winter.

Local Celebrations 

Everyone has heard of Punxsutawney Phil, but do you know that York County has three of our very own celebrity groundhogs & celebrations too? 

Poor Richard  

York City is home to "Poor Richard" and the Slumbering Ground Hog Lodge which is reported to be the third oldest Groundhog Lodge in the US. 

Poor Richard invites you to join him for his annual prediction at the 96th Annual Ground Hog Day Celebration Friday, February 2, 2024, at 7:15 am at the Elks Lodge #213 located at 223 N George St, York. 

The ceremony will be held outside and may be observed from the sidewalk in front of the Elks Lodge patio. 

All are welcome to attend. 


Poor Richard: 'We can only hope for warmer days'

Dover Doug

Dover Doug has been the Chief Groundhog for Dover Township since February 2, 2002. 

You can join him for his annual Prognostication at Lerh Park located at 3700 Davidsburg Rd, Dover on Friday, February 2, 2023, at 7:00 am.

 Following the Prognostication, the public is invited to join him for breakfast inside the Dover Community Building. 

For more information please visit the Dover Township website or FB page

Dover or Bust!! | Groundhog Day 365

Guthrie the Groundhog

Guthrie the Groundhog is the Guthrie Memorial Library mascot.  

Guthrie will be celebrating his 2 year library anniversary on February 2 and we plan to celebrate all week long! Join us Monday, January 29th-Friday, February 2nd, 2024. 

Week-long activities will include: 

Groundhog-themed story times, 

Crawl through our groundhog burrow, 

Groundhog-themed activity packs 

Guthrie search and find! Look for the Guthrie cutout in the Children’s Library and get a prize. 

Vote to see if Guthrie will see his shadow!

Our week-long celebration will end on February 2 with a Party at 12:00 pm -4:30 pm where we will build burrows with LEGOs®, make shadow puppets and more! 

Guthrie Memorial Library is located at 2 Library Pl, Hanover

Nixon Park Groundhog Storytime 

February 7 at  10:00am read an interactive story with a park naturalist and learn about Pennsylvania's largest member of the squirrel family. 

After the story, there will be an opportunity to meet a live groundhog from a local wildlife rehabilitator. 

Students must be accompanied by an adult. cash donations to Acorn Acres Wildlife Rehabilitation are appreciated. 

This event targets children ages three and up and their families. 

Pre-registration is required for this event and spaces are limited.

 Call 717-428-1961 or email to register. Include phone number, number of participants, and ages of children.

Groundhog Day Treats & Activities

If you're looking for a sweet Groundhog-themed treat to celebrate this special occasion our Groundhog Day cookies and Groundhog Day Pudding Cups are sure to satisfy your sweet tooth!  

Groundhog Day Cookie Recipe


2 cups sifted flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon ground cloves
1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 cup soft butter
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup molasses
1 egg yolk
1 egg, slightly beaten
Currants or raisins

Sift together first seven ingredients. Set aside. Cream butter and sugar until fluffy. Blend in molasses and yolk. Stir in flour mixture and mix well. Form into a ball.

Wrap in plastic wrap. Chill overnight, several nights or freeze.

Place small amounts of dough on a sheet of plastic wrap, and cover with plastic wrap. Roll 1/8 inch thick. Cut out cookies with lightly floured cutter. The cookie cutter can be purchased on Phil's website.

Place cookies on greased baking sheet. Brush with slightly beaten egg. Decorate with currants or raisin eyes. Repeat until all dough is used.

Bake 8 to 10 minutes in a preheated 350-degree oven. Cool slightly before removing from cookie sheet. Makes 72 or more medium-sized groundhogs.

 Groundhog Day Pudding Cups 


Nutter Butter Cookies

Chocolate Pudding Cups

Coconut Flakes

Brown M&M’s

Small Candy Eyes

Small Marshmallow Bits

Green Food Coloring


Put coconut flakes in a bowl and mix with a few drops of the green food coloring.

Open one Nutter Butter cookie and use the inside "butter" to add the facial features of the groundhog.

Spread a little bit of the inside butter on the back of the eyes, nose (brown M&M’s), and teeth (small marshmallow bits). Then simply press on the cookie.

To make the ears, take one M&M and cut it in half. Then use some of the inside butter again to place on top of the cookie.

Now take your final groundhogs and place them inside the pudding cups. Top the cups with your "grass" (green coconut flakes).

For more Groundhog Day fun:

Check out our Pinterest page for some craft inspiration and more! 

  Enjoy these fun educational Groundhog Day games online.