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‘Frog Man:’ Peepers peeped Thursday

March 17, 2011

"Peeper Watcher" John London of Big Run.

BIG RUN — On the luckiest day in March, the spring peepers have spoken — er, peeped.

John London, the official Frog Man, or “Peeper Watcher” of Big Run, reported that while walking through the Big Run swamp, he heard the frogs peep around 5:47 p.m. Thursday — St. Patrick’s Day — thus heralding the arrival of spring, according to the legend.

Last week, London said he hoped the tiny peepers would peep before the annual Peepers Banquet, which is scheduled for Sunday at the War Memorial — and Thursday, he got his wish.

According to London, the legend says spring is not officially here until the frogs see through the glass — in this case, ice — three times. Hearing the peepers for the first time doesn’t mean it’s spring, but that spring is on its way.

London, who has been recording the dates of the peepers’ peeps for years, said the earliest peeps in this area came March 2, 1979. The latest were April 1, 1978, April 1, 1999, and April 1, 2001.
Last year, the peepers peeped March 19, 2010.

The annual banquet, which begins with social time at 5 p.m. and dinner at 6 p.m., will feature Judge John Foradora as the guest speaker.
London said tickets for the banquet are nearly sold out.

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