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Five Things You Need to Know Today: Feb. 2

An essential get-me-going daily morning column from Hamilton-Wenham Patch.

Today is Thursday, Feb. 2. Here are five things you need to know:

1. Groundhog Day: Yes, Groundhog Day is a rather funny, classic Bill Murray film. But it’s also an actual day - today. Punxsutawney Phil will come out of his little hole down in Pennsylvania this morning and decide whether winter is over or not. Remember, if Phil sees his shadow winter will last for six more weeks, while if he doesn’t see his shadow winter will be over soon.

2. Super Bowl: We’re four days away from the big game in Indianapolis. And there’s signs of enthusiastic support for the Patriots emerging in both towns. Stop and take a look – has set up an impressive Patriots-themed display in its front window on Bay Road.

3. Babies and Books: The Babies and Books program is on Thursday night and anyone from the program’s past in invited to celebrate at the . The party runs from 4-5:30 and will include a film from the first ever program in 1987 plus - of course - cake.

4. Salem Five: One of the three banks with a branch in Hamilton has now officially added another area bank to its ranks. on Wednesday announced that it had completed the buyout of Stoneham Savings Bank, which will now operate under the name Stoneham Savings as a division of Salem Five until 2015. The Hamilton branch will be one of the bank’s 30 locations with $3.1 billion in assets.

5. School Committee: The Hamilton-Wenham Regional School Committee at , with a very full agenda, including discussion about the at the and and discussion about the proposal to create a “Virtual Department of Public Works” that would combine facilities management for both towns and the schools.

To find out what is going on today in Hamilton and Wenham, check out our events listings.

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