Punxsutawney Phil, the star of one of the US’ quirkiest holidays, Groundhog Day, is getting his own foursquare badge courtesy of VisitPA. On Groundhog Day, February 2 â€” Pennsylvania time, of course â€” you’ll be able to unlock the “PA Groundhog Day” badge by following VisitPA and including the word “groundhog” in a shout. The badge was announced this morning during Phil’s annual appearance at the Pennsylvania Farm Show in Harrisburg.
Groundhog Day is celebrated all across the US and Canada, but it holds a special meaning for Pennsylvanians. It originated amongst the Pennsylvania German community there and the largest Groundhog Day celebration is held each year in Punxsutawney. It’s said that if the groundhog sees his shadow and returns to his burrow, there will be six more weeks of winter. If he doesn’t see his shadow, it signals an early spring.
â€œThere is only one weather-forecasting groundhog: Punxsutawney Phil in the Pennsylvania Wilds. This year, anyone will have the opportunity to earn a badge featuring his likeness from visitPA,â€ said Mickey Rowley, deputy secretary for tourism. â€œThis is a one-time only opportunity to proudly sport a badge on your virtual chest as we discover the fate of winter.â€
This will be the fourth badge offered by VisitPA. The first three, PA Retail Polka, PA Shooflyer and PA 4 Score & 7 were launched last May and have been unlocked by more than 12,000 foursquare users. They were the first â€” and still only â€” US state to offer branded badges. VisitPA considers them successful enough that they recently extended their partnership with foursquare. They’ve also worked with other tourism groups around the state, like Bucks County and Hershey-Harrisburg, to create their own branded pages.
What do you think of the Groundhog Day badge?