Pamela Merkin is from Sunnyvale, Texas and she is absolutely hooked on Groundhog Day. We met her on three days before Phil’s big day and found out that there isn’t much memorabilia that she doesn’t have.
For 11 years she’s been coming into Punxsy and she says there is no plan to stop. Merkin explained, “I just have a ball, it’s a lot of fun!”
Merkin has left her 45 or so degree Texas weather every February to come up to Gobbler’s Knob to see Punxsutawney Phil give his prognostication. It’s was on her 55th birthday that she got hooked on the holiday- and she hasn’t slowed down since.
She explained, “The first time I went I was just enthralled with the fact that it’s just nice clean fun. They had entertainment up on the knob, just meeting the people, the fireworks, the fact that the whole town is so groundhog nuts that I love it. It’s just awesome!”
She has all the gear and memorabilia that you can think of- even decked out head to toe. Including Groundhog Day themed clogs. She explained, “I designed these myself and you’ll notice one’s got the shadow, and one doesn’t. So this one says early spring, and this one says six more weeks of winter.”
And it follows her home as well, starting with a Texas groundhog that was specially Punxsutawney that stands guard on her front porch.
She said, “I have a groundhog bedroom that I have completely decked out everything that’s groundhog. From quilts, to pictures, to memorabilia, to my hat stack. I have a rack that has all my fun hats.”
She makes those hats every year to give out to the people she’s made lifelong connections with. Friends from hundreds of miles away that reunite every year.
“We’ve made some lifelong friends,” she said, “it’s one of the biggest pep rallies I’ve ever been to. And it doesn’t hurt that it’s my birthday.”
Merkin says that she has a standing reservation at the bed and breakfast she comes to every year and will keep coming until it’s not physically possible.