dr martens uk store Mayor won’t attend Groundhog Day ceremony because he has ‘a lot to manage’
Mayor Bill de Blasio will not be attending Friday’s Groundhog Day ceremony.
“He hasn’t attended in recent years. It’s a big city with a lot going on and a lot to manage,” de Blasio’s spokesman Eric Phillips, told the Advance in an email. “Groundhogs don’t always make the cut.”
The last time de Blasio held the groundhog was at the Island’s 2014 Groundhog Day ceremony. He dropped the animal after the handler placed it in his arms.
The groundhog, a female stand in named Charlotte,
died several days later. But the Staten Island Zoo said it was unlikely the groundhog’s death was related to being dropped.
At the 2015 Groundhog Day ceremony, the Staten Island Zoo implemented new guidelines which now require Chuck remain in a clear plastic enclosure from which he can only be removed from and held by his handler.
That year, the groundhog was hidden underneath a plexiglass enclosure during most of the ceremony and lifted up through an elevator for the prediction. No one touched Chuck before officials determined he did not see his shadow, signaling an early spring.
During the 2009 Groundhog Day ceremony Staten Island Chuck bit Mayor Michael Bloomberg right before he made his prediction when the mayor reached into the groundhog’s cottage to bring him out with some of his snacks.