Winter Storm Juno’s pal Linus headed to town

Where are they going to put all this snow?

Because Juno wasn’t enough, everyone please welcome Winter Storm Linus. Linus has already ripped through the midwest and is headed straight for us. Boston is predicted to get up to a foot and a half of snow, while Providence is slated to receive only a meager 10 inches. A winter storm warning for Providence is in effect from 9 p.m. tonight until 1 a.m. on Tuesday.

Winter Storm Linus is sure to be meaner than Linus from Peanuts.

Winter Storm Linus is sure to be meaner than Linus from Peanuts.

A wintry mix later tomorrow means more ice–as if it wasn’t already impossible to walk at more than a glacial pace (see what I did there?????) on Providence’s nicely salted and shoveled sidewalks. And heavy snowfall, at a rate of 1 to 2 inches per hour, tomorrow morning during rush hour will prove treacherous for commuters. Most Rhode Island public schools are closed tomorrow, according to the Providence Journal.

There’s been no word on class cancellations (we’re looking at you, Russell Carey), although I have already received emails from two professors about potential cancellations. Two snow days in a school year is unlikely, but not unprecedented following Winter Storm Sandy in 2012, which cancelled two days back to back. And even if the university remains open, be sure to check your email for individual class cancellations if professors can’t get to campus.

And, in a cruelly ironic twist, tomorrow is Groundhog Day. I guess that’s a good thing because the groundhog definitely won’t be able to see his shadow tomorrow. That being said, Providence is expecting snowfall two more days this week. Happy February everyone!

Image via

Were you up at 7:28 this morning? Punxsutawney Phil was.

The legendary “Punxsutawney Phil” went above and beyond his call of duty this Groundhog Day. The “King of the Groundhogs” was summoned from his wooden house this morning before to foretell spring’s arrival. The little guy didn’t see his shadow, which means spring is right around the corner!

What this does this mean for us? Well, if you believe Pennsylvanian German folklore and your elementary school teachers, you can count on spending a lot of time outside on the Main Green, shedding that extra layer when you go out at night, and—cross your fingers, knock on wood—enjoying a beautiful Spring Weekend.

In the meantime, when you’re braving the cold and bundling up to walk from Wriston to Pembroke for your 9 a.m. class, tough it out: remember that this “Weather Prophet” didn’t see his shadow, Binder is coming soon, and another “Weather Prophet” went commando at the White House.

Punxsy Phil says… Spring’s a-comin’

Nothing like the promise of a Milano cookie to get you up in the morning. — Courtesy of Reuters

This morning Punxsy Phil (as he is apparently affectionately known) poked his head out into the ridiculously terrible weather to declare that winter is coming to an end! With no shadow in sight, legend has it we will be treated to an early spring. You can see video coverage here.

And keep reading! There’s a conspiracy buried in here.

The announcement is hopeful, but completely incongruous with weather across the country. As Brown students wade through ankle-deep freezing slush to get to classes (that are really just never cancelled; RISD’s closed—what gives? anyway…), huge swaths of the country are suffering right along with us. Continue Reading

Groundhog Day Festivities

Groundhog Day is one of the stranger holidays celebrated in the United States, but it also is one of the coolest. Every year on February 2nd, a groundhog will emerge from its burrow into the brisk winter morning.  If the groundhog sees its shadow, it will run back into it’s burrow, signifying another 6 weeks of winter.  If the groundhog doesn’t see its shadow, it will run along, signifying a shortened winter.  The most famous groundhog is Punxsutawney Phil, who resides in Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania.

So this morning, a crowd of nearly 40,000 gathered in Gobbler’s Knob as a group of old men in hats and tuxedos (also known as the “inner circle”) examined the rodent’s movements intently.  Unfortunately, Phil saw his shadow and ran back into his burrow, signifying a long winter.

…So don’t put those hats and gloves away just yet, Brunonia.  We must brace for the cold, for the groundhog has spoken.

— Matt Klimerman