Ms. G Predicts an Early Spring! (with an Assist from Gov. Maura Healey) during Groundhog Day Event at Drumlin Farm
Michael P. O'Connor
LINCOLN, MA—Ms. G, the Official Groundhog of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, did not see her shadow during this morning’s Groundhog Day gathering at Mass Audubon’s Drumlin Farm Wildlife Sanctuary in Lincoln, meaning an early spring is expected.
According to folklore, if Ms. G had seen her shadow, we would be looking at six more weeks of winter.
The popular Drumlin Farm gathering again attracted a large and enthusiastic crowd, with families and children especially eager to watch Ms. G emerge from hibernation and explore her special outdoor enclosure, from where she would make her annual prognostication.
And her always-accurate prediction now carries even more weight, thanks to assistance from Governor Maura Healey, who participated in the annual groundhog fest/climate action day.
The Governor was introduced by Mass Audubon President David J. O’Neill and state Senator Michael Barrett, a leading voice for climate and renewable energy on Beacon Hill, whose district includes Lincoln.
In her remarks, Healey noted she had grown up on a farm, and that helping to care for farm animals helped forge her own early connections with nature. She credited Mass Audubon as among those “doing all they can to help young people know and learn and carry on stewardship of land and the environment.
“I’ve always been a huge fan of Mass Audubon, a huge fan of Drumlin Farm, and a huge fan of all those working to preserve our natural habitat and to address the real issues around climate, and those who are looking out for and looking after creatures great and small across this great state,” she added.
Then it was time for Ms. G to take center stage.
She entered the enclosure full of wood shavings, and small stumps and logs adorned with leaves of kale, her favorite food. After the groundhog spent an appropriate period exploring (and kale munching), Healey confirmed Ms. G’s decision.
“As the Governor of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts,” Healey intoned, “on February 2 in the Year 2023, we observed the Commonwealth of Massachusetts Official Groundhog, Ms. G. And I declare Ms. G does not appear to have observed her shadow, and therefore spring is on its way.”
The cheering attendees were also invited enjoy other event-related programs, from making groundhog crafts to meeting live animal ambassadors and learning how they adapt to winter as the climate changes.
Mass Audubon is the largest nature-based conservation organization in New England. Founded in 1896 by two women who fought for the protection of birds, Mass Audubon carries on their legacy by focusing on the greatest challenges facing the environment today: the loss of biodiversity, inequitable access to nature, and climate change. With the help of our 160,000 members and supporters, we protect wildlife, conserve and restore resilient land, advocate for impactful environmental policies, offer nationally recognized education programs for adults and children, and provide endless opportunities to experience the outdoors at our wildlife sanctuaries. Explore, find inspiration, and take action at www.massaudubon.org.