Passy Pete predicts...

By Jordan Bailey | Sep 04, 2017
Photo by: Jordan Bailey "Belfast Barons" Tina Delsanto, Mayor Walter Ash, David Crabiel (with scroll), Susan Woods, Greg Dutch and David Brassbridge preside over a ceremony at Heritage Park Sept. 4.

Belfast — Lobster oracle "Passy Pete" has again predicted six more weeks of summer in the city's third annual Groundhog Day-inspired ceremony.

The news comes to the delight of city business owners hoping for a tourist season that extends beyond Labor Day. They were represented by tuxedo-T-shirt-clad "Belfast Barons," who consulted the lobster before a crowd in Heritage Park Monday morning.

To the music of B-52s "Rock Lobster," the barons processed to the waterfront, where they pulled a wooden lobster trap ashore.

Back at the park, the lobster was removed from the trap and communicated in "lobsterese" to baron David Crabiel which of two scrolls contained his intended message. One indicates an early winter, the other an extended summer.

Crabiel, after telling the lobster it was "nice to see you again," unfurled the designated scroll and read:

"I have the answer everyone seeks. There is snow upon the peaks, but down in Belfast, the weather is holding fast. Summer will last six more weeks!"

The crowd cheered.

On the third straight year of the same prediction from the supposedly clairvoyant crustacean, some might suspect that the whole event is just a Chamber of Commerce gimmick to lure more tourists to the area. Though the organizers will tell you that is exactly what it is, historic weather data shows Passy Pete has been right every time.

Four days after his prediction last year, the temperature in Belfast hit 89 degrees, according to the website Weather Underground. The average daily high for the month was 76 degrees and only a hundredth of an inch of rain fell. In September 2015, after Pete's first consultation, temperatures reached the 80s five times. The average daily high that month was 73 degrees, and 1 inch of rain fell.

Mayor Walter Ash, playing a "Belfast Baron," carries the wooden lobster trap containing Passy Pete ashore. (Photo by: Jordan Bailey)
"Belfast Barons" and spectators cheer as Mayor Walter Ash finds lobster "Passy Pete" in good health in his trap. (Photo by: Jordan Bailey)
Tina Delsanto claps as Mayor Walter Ash presents Passy Pete to the crowd. (Photo by: Jordan Bailey)
Passy Pete enjoys his annual moment in the limelight.
Mayor Walter Ash attempts ventriloquism while the crowd sings "Happy Birthday" to David Crabiel, right, at the prompting of Michaelene Achorn, center, executive director of Belfast Area Chamber of Commerce.
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Jordan M Bailey
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Jordan Bailey has been working for The Republican Journal since 2013. She studied philosophy at Boston College and has experience in marine science education and journalism. She lives in Belfast.


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