Punxsutawney Phil predicts an early spring

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If you're into listening to groundhogs, break out your flip-flops and bathing suits.

The famed groundhog Punxsutawney Phil saw no shadow when he emerged from his home in a mock tree stump in western Pennsylvania, his handlers told a crowd of thousands Tuesday morning -- meaning, according to tradition, there will be early springlike weather.

Phil's annual Groundhog Day appearance in Punxsutawney drew cheers from the warmly dressed bystanders, apparently more than ready to closet the hats and coats they were wearing on this 22-degree Fahrenheit morning.

How do we know he didn't see his shadow? Language interpretation, naturally. One of his top-hatted handlers told the crowd he can speak "groundhogese" while holding a special cane.

Phil directed this man to one of two pre-printed scrolls.

"There is no shadow to be cast. An early spring is my forecast!" said one of the men, reading for the famous rodent.

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