WEST ORANGE, NJ – Essex County’s resident groundhog, Essex Ed, saw his shadow at his home at the Essex County Turtle Back Zoo on Thursday morning. According to the legend of Groundhog Day, seeing his shadow means Essex County residents will have six more weeks of winter.

Essex County Executive Joseph DiVincenzo said he was hoping for spring to arrive early this year, but was optimistic about the next few weeks.

"I prefer warmer weather, so I'm a little disappointed in Essex Ed's prediction,” he said. "It may be cold outside, but it's still a great time to come out and Experience Essex, and our wonderful Turtle Back Zoo and South Mountain Recreation Complex. Waiting for Essex Ed on Groundhog Day creates excitement about Essex County's Turtle Back Zoo and highlights its role as an educational resource."

According to DiVincenzo, Essex Ed also predicted that the Atlanta Falcons would defeat the New England Patriots in the Super Bowl on Sunday.