[Shaw Media file photo]
[Jake Reich of Union stands in front of the bandstand in Woodstock to see Woodstock Willie emerge at last year's Groundhog Days. It was 15 degrees outside with a windchill of zero degrees, according to the National Weather Service.]
For information on all events, call the Groundhog Days Hotline at 815-334-2620 or visit www.woodstockgroundhog.org. Following is a complete schedule of events:
GROUNDHOG DAY STORY TIME, 5 to 6 p.m. Feb. 1, Stage Left Café, 125 W. Van Buren St., Woodstock. Groundhog stories for children presented by the Woodstock Public Library. Free. Information: 815-334-9597.
AWAKENING OF THE GROUNDHOG, 6 p.m. Feb. 1, Woodstock Opera House, 121 W. Van Buren St., Woodstock. Welcome Woodstock Willie as he makes his explosive appearance on the roof of the Opera House to begin the celebration. A trivia contest with prizes follows at Stage Left Café. Free. Information: 815-334-9597.
WOODSTOCK WILLIE’S BEER TASTING, 7 to 9 p.m. Feb. 1, Waverly Ballroom, 214 Main St., Woodstock. Craft beer tasting, appetizers and silent auction to support the Child Advocacy Center of McHenry County. Tickets: $30 available online, by phone or at the door. Information: www.mchenrycac.org.
GROUNDHOG DAY PROGNOSTICATION, 7 a.m. Feb. 2, Woodstock Square Park, Dean and Van Buren streets, Woodstock. Celebrate Groundhog Day at Gobbler’s Knob. See Woodstock Willie emerge from his tree trunk as he did during the movie. To wake Woodstock Willie from his winter nap, there will be a polka band playing. Free.
DRINK TO WORLD PEACE, 7:20 a.m. Feb. 2, Public House of Woodstock, 101 N. Johnson St., Woodstock. Following the prognostication, the toast will take place where the bar scene in “Groundhog Day” was filmed. Sweet vermouth on the rocks with a twist will be available in a souvenir glass. Cost: $5.
GROUNDHOG DAY OFFICIAL BREAKFAST, 7:30 a.m. Feb. 2, Woodstock Moose Lodge, 406 Clay St., Woodstock. Following Willie’s prognostication, take a short walk to Clay Street for a buffet breakfast and entertainment. Tickets: $15 available at Read Between the Lynes, Home State Bank Woodstock and Woodstock Public Library.
GROUNDHOG CARVING, 8 a.m. to noon Feb. 2, in the Park on the Square. Come watch as a local craftsman with a chainsaw creates a groundhog from a log. This event will be going on all morning following the big ceremony. Free.
WALKING TOURS OF FILMING SITES, 9 a.m. Feb. 2 and 1:30 p.m. Feb. 3, meet at Woodstock Moose Lodge, 406 Clay St., Woodstock. At 12:30 p.m. Feb. 4, meet at the Woodstock Opera House, 121 W. Van Buren St., Woodstock. Tours of the “Groundhog Day” movie locations, including 15 sites where memorable scenes were shot. Walk will end with a visit inside the Cherry Tree Inn Bed and Breakfast house, the boarding house where Murray’s character woke up every morning. Enjoy a glass of hot cider while you’re there.
FREE “GROUNDHOG DAY” MOVIE SHOWINGS, 10 a.m. Feb. 2, 3 and 4, Classic Cinemas Woodstock Theatre, 209 Main St., Woodstock. The Woodstock theater was featured as “Alpine Theater” in the movie.
“GROUNDHOG DAY” MOVIE MEMORABILIA, noon to 3 p.m. Feb. 2, Woodstock Public Library, 414 W. Judd St., Woodstock. Original scripts, props and scrapbooks on display. Local people familiar with the movie will be on hand to answer questions.
GROUNDHOG DAY DINNER DANCE, 6 p.m. Feb. 2, Woodstock Moose Lodge, 406 Clay St., Woodstock. The bachelor auction and dance scenes in the movie were filmed here. A new menu this year, including a carving station with roast beef. Tickets for dinner and dance are $15 and will be available at the door. After 8 p.m., admission is $5.