Vote early, vote often for no shadow

February 2, 2010 (BROOKFIELD, Ill.) Groundhog Day has never before been so political. Instead of the traditional fat little furry woodchuck pretending to be a meteorologist, it's a fired up political rally at Brookfield Zoo. Campaign signs promoting Cloudy and Tumbleweed, the zoo's two groundhogs, pushed for an early spring. But even before the two creatures can leave their burrow to vote, the early exit polls were in.

"I don't think we're going to see the sun today the way the snow is coming down. I think we're going to have an early spring," said Patty Anderson, lead keeper, Brookfield Zoo.

There was one brief shining moment over Groundhog Day, but the sun didn't last and long. Winter didn't have a chance against an early spring.

"I think he is not going to see his shadow because it's not sunny," said Wil Radcliffe. "It's going to be an early spring."

It was an unusual combination of confusing days- Election Day, which is always confusing and Groundhog Day. But, at least we got a chance to vote.

"I'm voting for no shadow," said Susan Bradbury. Even though it's Chicago, she's only going to vote "Just once."

Tumbleweed made a brief appearance while her roommate Cloudy sleeps through the whole thing. The early and often no- shadow votes are adding up.

"No shadow again, then," said Tom Turek, experienced Chicago voter. "Three times. Ha, ha, ha. That's all."

Tumbleweed ventured outside three times and, in a sense, voted three times. Three times her shadow wass a no show. Spring is so close you can smell it.

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