For the last four years, a lobster in Belfast, Maine, has correctly predicted whether summer would continue or winter would arrive early for her yearly visit.
His name is Passy Pete, and he forecasts the future by choosing between two scrolls – one that predicts six more weeks of summer (he’s kind of the anti-Punxsutawney Phil), and one that says winter is coming (soon).
For the first three years, Passy said we had six more weeks of summer to enjoy the warmth (and he was correct!). He also guessed (???) correctly in 2018 that an early winter was on the horizon.
He says the same for 2019, so maybe you can go ahead and swap out your closet.
It falls to Belfast baron Dave Crabiel to read from the scroll chosen by the lobster.
“Friends of Belfast, on this second day of September – Labor Day in the year 2019 – it’s in your best interest to collect your coats, tell your sister to return the ones you lent her, tell Cathy, the harbormaster, to remove the boats, and everyone get ready for winter.”
The crowd groaned at the news.
Crabiel and the other Belfast business owners came up with the idea when they noticed how steeply tourism dropped off after the July 4th holiday.
“While Belfast is a great community year-round, we certainly do see an increase in business in the summer with the tourists. So we thought, what if there was an anti-groundhog, somebody who could predict a longer summer, rather than predicting winter?”
It seems to be working; crowds gather to see the crustacean choose a scroll. As long as he keeps picking right, I imagine his legend will increase and more people will descend on Belfast to watch him do his magic every year.
Crabiel hopes the same.
“All four years up to this point he’s been accurate. So I don’t know – we’ll see. It’s not the result we wanted.”
A longer summer means more travelers, and more business for the town, of course, but what can you do? The lobster has spoken.
If you want to see the ceremony in action, check out this video:
As for Pete, he’s returned to the bay each year no matter which scroll he chooses, so you can’t pick your bone with him.
Take it up with Mother Nature, I guess. Or just get out your coats, gather some firewood, and settle in.