Whether it’s your first time to Punxsutawney or your fifteenth, discover the magic that makes this town iconic, beyond its most famous resident and world-renowned weather prognosticator. While filled with endless pride and enthusiasm for Punxsutawney Phil with the beloved tradition fully engrained into the town and its surroundings, you’ll find many ways to embrace all the quaint town has to offer throughout the year, regardless if there’s six more weeks of winter or spring arrives early!
Tops Things to Do in Punxsutawney
Gobbler’s Knob: Before Phil takes center stage, take a self-guided tour of Gobbler’s Knob where the main event happens each and every year. Here’s your chance to stand on the very ground where our furry friend has made his annual prognostication since 1886, declaring six more weeks of winter or an early spring. Stop by the Gobbler’s Knob Visitors Center to take home special Groundhog Day memorabilia and stick around for the annual event on February 2.
Phil’s Burrow: Where can you find Phil when it isn’t Groundhog Day? Visit him all year round at his burrow from dawn until dusk every day. Residing in a climate-controlled environment with his wife, Phyllis, see where and how this local legend spends his days in downtown Punxsutawney.
Weather Discovery Center: There’s more than one reason Punxsutawney is known as the “Weather Capital of the World.” Located in the downtown’s former post office, you can learn about the folklore of weather against a backdrop of beautiful architectural details at the Weather Discovery Center. Explore interactive history, science, and technology exhibits that both adults and children will enjoy. The center is also home to the Meteorologist Hall of Fame!
Phantastic Phils! Art Project: Not surprisingly, it’s easy to find groundhog pride all throughout Punxsutawney, but especially thanks to the public art project, Phantastic Phils!. Grab a map and take yourself on a tour of downtown to try to spot all 32 of the larger-than-life fiberglass groundhogs, each one uniquely painted and designed by a local or national artist.
Mahoning Shadow Trail: Whether there’s six more weeks of winter or an early spring, you can embrace western PA’s beautiful natural landscape taking a hike along the Mahoning Shadow Trail. Named after Mahoning Creek and Punxsutawney Phil’s famous shadow, this 14.9-mile trail takes outdoor enthusiasts on an easy route along the scenic Mahoning Creek with highlights that include the historic Pennsylvania & Northwestern Railroad line and abandoned ovens that burned coal into coke for iron furnaces.
Punxsutawney Historical and Genealogical Society: Have a family connection to Punxsutawney, or just want to discover the ancestorial history of the area? The Punxsutawney Historical and Genealogical Society offers experiences of all kinds to take a deep dive into the roots of the borough (or as those in the area might call it “burrow”) and the stories of the Punxsutawney people. Take a tour of the Bennis and Latimer Houses and find artifacts that tell the tales of the first inhabitants, learn about the area’s coal mining and coke production, and hear about how the annual Groundhog Day tradition came to be a beloved, worldly event.
Gobbler’s Knob Trail: Newer to the area, the Gobbler’s Knob Trail will take you on a trip down history lane — literally. This 0.4-mile trail includes informational signage along the way with info about the Groundhog Day legacy, The Inner Circle, and Punxsutawney Phil. Hit the trail to take a deep dive into the tradition before February 2.
Cloe Lake: Reel in some outdoor fun at Cloe Lake! This 27-acre reservoir is perfect for the fishing fanatic as it’s fully equipped with a pier and easy-access shore fishing. Open year-round and permitting only electric motors and unpowered boats, at this lake you can catch species such as trout, bass, walleye, and blue gill. You can even bring your furry friend for them to also enjoy Punxsutawney’s great outdoors.
Rainbow Mountain Alpacas: Phil isn’t the only furry favorite in this small town. Located just 15 minutes outside of downtown Punxsutawney, you can shop locally made alpaca products at Rainbow Mountain Alpacas. You’ll stay warm and toasty during your Gobbler’s Knob adventure wearing their socks, gloves, hats, and even cardigans. While there, be sure to say hi to the alpacas themselves as they graze on the open farm.
Best Places to Eat in Punxsutawney
The New Anchor Inn: A Punxsutawney staple for close to 90 years, The New Anchor Inn is a local, family-owned and -operated fine dining restaurant located just outside the downtown. In the winter, take a cozy seat in their brand-new dining area, and in the warmer months enjoy a meal on their outdoor deck. Known for their authentic Italian offerings, try the Original Anchor Inn Spaghetti or tailor your meal to satisfy your cravings by choosing to create your own pasta dish.
Sandfly Brewing Company: As Punxsutawney’s first craft beer brewery and tap room, Sandfly Brewing Company is a must-visit after a day of exploring the downtown. Featuring a wide variety of brews, seltzers, and local ciders, the brewery also plays host to a rotating list of local food trucks. Be sure to check their event schedule so you can pair your beer with local bites accordingly.
Gimmick’s Family Restaurant: Enjoy a homecooked meal at Gimmick’s Family Restaurant. You can’t miss the “Kiss the Cook” statue — a Phantastic Phils! art installment — before entering this diner-esque establishment. Known for having an all-day breakfast menu, select the classics like steak and eggs or a breakfast platter. Not a breakfast person? Lunch and dinner options are also available.
Places to Stay in Punxsutawney
Winslow House Bed & Breakfast: Located in the heart of downtown Punxsutawney, you can stay in the town’s first and oldest mansion. The Winslow House Bed and Breakfast was erected in 1874 as the family home of Reuben C. Winslow and Martha Drum. After being transformed into a bed and breakfast, it welcomed its first guests for Groundhog Day in 2007, and the rest is history. The mansion offers an elegant stay with five bedrooms, all with private baths and historic detailing throughout. Enjoy breakfast every morning under a crystal chandelier while dining using one of their several sets of antique china and silver.
The Cobblestone Hotel & Suites: Located within 80 miles of Pittsburgh with easy access to and from U.S. Highway 119 and less than a five-minute drive from downtown Punxsutawney, the Cobblestone Hotel & Suites is an ideal place to stay . You’ll be greeted by a Phantastic Phils! statue when you arrive at this charming hotel. Equipped with cozy rooms each with coffee stations, microwaves, and an abundance of charging options, there’s more to this quaint stay than its ideal location.
Jackson Run Bed & Breakfast: This family-owned, circa 1880s farmhouse is ready to welcome you with open arms as you explore the area. Located in a country setting, the Jackson Run Bed & Breakfast is outfitted with an old-fashioned barn, apple orchards, and a small grape vineyard. With three guestrooms all featuring private baths, you’ll find comfort in their accommodations. Take advantage of their Cottage that sleeps seven and is the perfect isolated, country retreat — making it ideal for families or extended stay guests.
Gardner Mansion: Within walking distance of the town’s must-see destinations including the Punxsutawney Historical and Genealogical Society, the Gardner Mansion is a quaint bed and breakfast with stunning, turn of the century design and architecture. With five bedrooms and two full baths, book an entire floor or a singular room for a weekend away or to attend Groundhog Day festivities. Be sure to enjoy a meal or two in their fully restored dining room.
The Shadow Hotel: Although still under construction and not opening in time for Groundhog Day 2024, The Shadow Hotel is planning to open in January 2025. Constructed in the late 1880s as the Pantall Hotel, when completed the building will once again be a showpiece for downtown Punxsutawney, welcoming guests to their completely renovated hotel rooms on the second and third floors, a new restaurant and lounge area on the first floor, and banquet/event facilities on the fourth floor.
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