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Celebrate Groundhog Day in a Local Park

Groundhog Standing

It's the biggest national holiday of the year – at least in the first three days of February.

It's Groundhog Day, and the Fairfax County Park Authority is celebrating it with programs at five parks.

You can visit a groundhog burrow as part of the Groundhog's Day Out program at 2 p.m. at Frying Pan Farm Park on February 2, 2014. You'll learn about the groundhog, enjoy games and even make a groundhog friend to take home. There also will be hot chocolate, in case it's cold. The program cost is $5. Frying Pan is at 2709 West Ox Road in Herndon.

Ellanor C. Lawrence Park has a bigger-than-life groundhog that will help you learn about the Groundhog Day story. ECLP's Groundhog Day program on February 2 includes a visit to the Walney Visitor Center's garden groundhog and groundhog games. The cost is $5, and the center is at 5040 Walney Road in Chantilly.

Hidden Oaks Nature Center has invited the costumed characters Willard and Mother Nature to visit on February 2 and talk to kids about nature's true weather forecasters. The $6 program begins at 2 p.m., and the nature center is at 7701 Royce Street in Annandale.

The celebration continues on Monday, February 3, when Green Spring Gardens presents the legend of the groundhog's shadow to youngsters three-to-six years old as part of the site's Garden Sprouts program. The youngsters will make a craft and find their own shadows near the park's sundial. The program costs $6. Green Spring is located at 4601 Green Spring Rd. in Alexandria.

Also on February 3, Hidden Pond Nature Center celebrates groundhogs at 10 a.m. as part of the site's weekly Nature Quest series. Then at 4:30 p.m. on Wed., Feb. 5, Hidden Pond again explores groundhogs and other nature weather predictors as part of its Wildlife Wednesday series. Each program is $6. The address for Hidden Pond is 8511 Greeley Blvd. in Springfield.  

Information on all the programs is on the Park Authority website at Parktakes Online.

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