Well, did the groundhog see his shadow? Wait a second, Wes. Aren’t you a couple of weeks late?
Not in the Ozarks. The traditional Groundhog Day in the Ozark region, where many of us are blessed to live, is not Feb. 2, but Feb. 14.
Let’s see, though, isn’t there some other special holiday or observance on Feb. 14? Gosh, if there is, I can’t remember it for the life of me. Must not be that important.
So, yes, Feb. 14 is – or was – the traditional date for Groundhog Day in the Ozarks, according to noted Ozark folklorist Vance Randolph (1892-1980).
Randolph spent most of his life researching and gathering as much as he possible could about the Ozarks, mainly by talking to everyone he could about some old time beliefs and superstitions. Many of the folks he spoke with were born in the mid-1800s, and were direct living links to the past. He lived in McDonald County for part of his life and remained in the Ozarks until his death.