Canada's History - - TRADING POST -

Wiar­ton Wil­lie, the al­bino ground­hog from cen­tral On­tario, likely has the most fa­mous shadow in the coun­try, but as many as ten of his ex­tended fam­ily (in­clud­ing at least one pup­pet) at­tempt to pre­dict the end of win­ter each year all over Canada. Nova Sco­tia boasts both Shube­nacadie Sam and Two Rivers Tun­nel, the lat­ter from Cape Bre­ton Is­land, while Val d’Espoir, Que­bec, is home to Fred la mar­motte. Over the years, Bran­don Bob and Win­nipeg Wil­low (and now Win­nipeg Wyn) have pro­vided pre­dic­tions for Man­i­toba, while Balzac Billy — a hu­man in a ground­hog cos­tume — does like­wise in Al­berta. Nat­u­rally, Toronto had to get in on the act with Dun­das Donna (ac­tu­ally a South Amer­i­can coati), while just to the north­east Klein­burg, On­tario, hosts Gary the Ground­hog. —

46 Top row, left to right: Wiar­ton Wil­lie, Shube­nacadie Sam, Dun­das Donna (a coati, not a ground­hog), and Fred la mar­motte. Bot­tom row, left to right: Two River Tun­nel, pup­pet prog­nos­ti­ca­tor Man­i­toba Merv, and Balzac Billy, ac­tu­ally a hu­man im­per­son­at­ing a ground­hog.

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