People in the good old United States of America sure do take their alcohol seriously... which unfortunately also means they get pretty seriously hungover. But some places are significantly more hungover than other, as shown by Business Insider's list of most hungover cities in America. And you thought you felt awful on New Year's Day, am I right?
In order to determine the 25 most hungover places in the nation, Business Insider used information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's 2011 and 2012 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System and the Census Bureau's 2013 County Business Patterns program. Five total indicators were used to construct the ranking, including: Binge drinking (the percentage of survey respondents who had recently binge drunk), heavy drinking (the percentage of people who said they were heavy drinkers on the same survey), number of bars (per 100,000 residents), number of beer, liquor, or wine stores (also per 100,000 residents), and number of other establishments providing alcohol (like brewieries, wineries, and distilleries).
Then, Business Insider used the 183 metropolitan areas and divisions available from the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System BRFSS survey to compile a list of the top 25 most hungover cities in the United States. Here's the top 10, along with a little info about each place's favorite beverage; head on over to BI to see the full list of all 25. Happy New Year, everyone!
10. Scranton, Pa.
The town Pennsylvania that won over our hearts after the U.S. version of The Office gained popularity is the 10th most hungover city in America, according to Business Insider's list. About eight percent of survey respondents admitted to heavily drinking, and over 20 percent admitted to binge drinking. What are they drinking that's making them so hungover? Most likely beer, and most likely their native brew, Yuengling — which, by the way, is the oldest brewing company in the United States.
9. Milwaukee, Wis.
They sure love their alcohol in the land of cheese, as Milwaukee is the ninth most hungover city in the United States, where there are about 31 bars per about 100,000 people and 23 percent of residents admit to binge drinking. Unlike neighboring Michigan, where wine dominates, people from Milwaukee (and all of Wisconsin, for that matter) love their beer; specifically, they're fond of Miller Lite. They also love their Jack Daniels.
8. Salisbury, Md.
Though Salisbury binge drinks less than both Milwauke and Scranton, more people overall admitted to drinking heavily than both towns. Not only that, but there are more beer, wine, and liquor stores per 100,000 people than there are in Milwaukee and Scranton, although there are fewer bars, so it seems people are getting more hungover at home. Their drinks of choice? Vodka and Fireball, even though they're dangerously close to moonshine nation in West Virginia.
7. Denver, Colo.
Even though weed is legal in this state, the good people of Colorado still love to drink and get hungover. With plenty of liquor stores and bars and 20 percent of residents that admit to binge drinking, Denver comes in at the seventh most hungover city, downing Bacardi and Bud Light (but mostly Bacardi).
6. Missoula, Mont.
Missoula is the sixth most hungover city in America, and for good reason, too. They have a whopping 40 bars per 100,000 people (almost double the last four cities); plus, they're part of the unofficial "Northern Beer Binge Federation," according to Vinepair's United States of Alcohol. Like people from Denver, people from Missoula love their Bud Light.
5. Great Falls, Mont.
Montana beat itself out because, it turns out, you can have more bars per 100,000 people than 40: Great Falls has almost 60. When they're not drinking Bud Light, Great Falls residents are most likely drinking Fireball, which is Montana's favorite liquor.
4. Burlington, Vt.
What do you get when you combine long, cold winters, lots of mountains, and a stressful campaign featuring a snazzy candidate from your home state? Lots of drinking. And bad hangovers. Burlington houses about 20 wine, liquor, and beer stores and 15 bars per 100,000 people; about nine percent of people admit to heavily drinking. Of course, their beer of choice is New England's beloved Samuel Adams.
3. Manhattan, Kan.
You would think that Manhattan, New York would be on this list, but nope — Manhattan, Kansas sweeps into the number three place. Vinepair's United States of Alcohol dubs it part of the Bud Republic of the Midwest, so it's no secret what beer they prefer, but when Manattanites want to get crazy, they go for the Jack Daniels (with which they probably make Manhattans).
2. Billings, Mont.
I know what you're thinking: Montana, again! Billings is the third town to make the top 10 most hungover cities list wth nine percent of people admitting to heavy drinking, 22 percent admitting to binge drinking, and 41 bars per 100,000 people. It's a big state with a lot of countryside — what else are you going to do?
1. Lawrence, Kan.
The number one spot is in a state that has appeared twice on the top 10 list, where alcohol is abundant (29 bars per 100,000 people and 35 beer/wine/liquor stores per 100,000 people) and people are drinking (eight percent admitted to heavy drinking and 26 percent admitted to binge drinking). At least, if you're going to be drunk in Lawrence, you'll probably have lots of resources (friends and drug stores) to readily help you through your morning-after, hangover misery!