FRENCH CREEK, W.Va. (WBOY) — Move over, Punxsutawney Phil—French Creek Freddie is set to make his 46th Groundhog Day prediction at the West Virginia State Wildlife Center in Upshur County on Thursday, Feb. 2.
It’s been an interesting winter so far, with periods of warmer weather scattered throughout dustings of snow, as well as extreme wind chill sending temperatures plunging into the -20s back in December.
“We are very excited to see what Freddie predicts this year and to welcome all of our guests, many of whom make the trip to French Creek each February,” said Trevor Moore, a wildlife biologist at the Wildlife Center. “We have several special activities planned and hope to see folks and their families come out and enjoy a fun morning at the Wildlife Center.”
The event is free. Those interested are advised to arrive by 9:30 a.m. ahead of Freddie’s prediction, which is scheduled for 10 a.m.
In addition to learning whether or not to expect six more weeks of winter, attendees can also enjoy the following activities, according to a press release from the West Virginia Division of Natural Resources (DNR):
- An opportunity to win prizes during the 10th annual Woodchuckin’ Contest
- Meet and greet with the French Creek Freddie mascot
- Music performed by the French Creek Elementary School Choir
- Free hot chocolate and cookies at the Gift Shop
- ProjectWild activity
The West Virginia State Wildlife Center will also be open for guests to visit while they’re there. The center houses native animals like black bears, bobcats, and elk, as well as some historically native animals that are no longer here, like the gray wolf, bison, and mountain lion, according to the DNR.
The center is located at 163 Wildlife Rd. in French Creek and is open Monday through Friday between 8:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m.