The 10 Drunkest Cities In Minnesota For 2024

We used Saturday Night Science to determine the drunkest cities in Minnesota.

Is there anything wrong with being called the drunkest city in your state? Especially in Minnesota, which NPR said is the 5th highest in the nation for binge drinking.

It’s pretty clear that you all like to get your drink on just about every chance you can get up there in The Land of A Million Lakes.

How do you decide how much a place drinks? By the number of available places to buy booze, and by how often people are talking about drinking, that’s how.

Plus, we thought why not add in a stereotype? Cause, you know, drinking is one reason for divorce, and something that divorced people do a lot of.

Using that criteria, it’s not hard to scrape the internet, run some scientific data on where partiers might live in Minnesota, and then put out a list.

Because, the data never lies, does it?

So, hold our beers and watch this. After analyzing all cities with a decent amount of people in them, we came up with this list as The Drunkest Cities in Minnesota:

Many of these are smaller cities in Minnesota with many bars in town or nearby, where there’s a higher than average divorce rate. Studies have indicated that when one or both partners in a marriage are alcoholics, that couple is three times more likely to divorce.

Read on below to see where your town ranked.

For more reading on Minnesota, check out:

What drunken criteria did we use?

In order to rank the drunkest cities in Minnesota, we had to determine what criteria defines someone who drinks a lot.

We threw a lot of criteria at this one in order to get the best, most complete results possible. Using Yelp and Sperling’s Best Places, this is the criteria we used:

  • Number of bars and pubs per capita
  • Number of wineries per capita
  • Number of liquor stores per capita
  • Each city’s drunk related tweets within the last week
  • Each city’s divorce rate

For geo-located tweets, we measured the following raw number of tweets that came from within a city’s general are: #Drunk, #Party, #Beer, #Wine and #Cocktails

Note: For the sake of getting reliable numbers, we counted places within a city’s border, as well as within a short driving distance.

1. Red Wing

Red Wing, MN

Source: Wikipedia User Elkman at English Wikipedia | CC BY-SA 2.5

Population: 16,444
Divorce rate: 15th highest in the state
Bars per capita: 8th in the state
Liquor stores per capita: 11th in Minnesota

Wow, Red Wing, you are tore up from the floor up! We’re impressed. Based on the data and number of raw tweets coming from your location, per capita, it sounds like you are all having a really, really good time.

When you have the 11th most liquor stores per capita in the state, and the 8th most bars, it’s pretty obvious that you all like to get your drink on. And, when you consider that 13% of you are divorced, it’s clear that there’s a lot ofdown time at your house.

Red Wing is an hour drive south of Minneapolis.

Plus, you’re right on the Wisconsin border. Are those drunks over there encouraging you guys to party too hard or what? Peer pressure.

The number of drunk tweets coming from this general area was limited. We counted just 4 in the last 7 days.

2. Stillwater

Stillwater, MN

Source: Public domain

Population: 18,229
Divorce rate: 11.3%
Bars per capita: 4th in Minnesota
Liquor stores per capita: 9th in the state

Stillwater has one of the lowest divorce rates of the cities on this list. Good job, guys. You’re holding it all together despite your party animal tendencies. Or is the alcohol the glue’ in your marriage? Either way, sounds like you’re having a blast.

Stillwater residents have some extra disposable income on their hands. At least you’re ordering top shelf booze up there.

Like Red Wing, Stillwater is right on the Wisconsin state line, 45 minutes east of Minneapolis on Route 36. Are we seeing a pattern here? Tell Wisconsin to quit buying you guys shots.

3. Brainerd

Brainerd, MN

Source: Wikipedia User Elkman | GFDL

Population: 13,609
Divorce rate: 12th highest in the state
Bars per capita: 15th in the state
Liquor stores per capita: 3rd in Minnesota

Brainerd is a medium sized city in the middle of the state, north of St. Cloud. Looks like you are all a little strapped for cash. But that’s okay, while you don’t have as many bars per capita as other cities, you make up for it in the number of liquor stores in the area.

You all know how to do it right out there in Brainerd. Sneaking in drinks to public places not only saves money, it makes you cool.

There were few mentions of drunk related tweets coming from this area, but we did see tons of Tweets about how the Minnesota Wild’s assistant coach was arrested for drinking and driving the other day with a kid in the car.

Way to class it up, Darryl Sydor.

4. Virginia

Virginia, MN

Source: Wikipedia User Bjoertvedt | CC BY-SA 3.0

Population: 8,718
Divorce rate: 3rd highest in the state
Bars per capita: 18th in the state
Liquor stores per capita: 5th in Minnesota

Virginia is way up in the northern part of the state, about 6 beers up from Duluth. Apparently they like to sit at home and drink a lot, because there are just about more liquor stores per capita than anywhere else in the state. What else are you gonna do up here for 5 months a year?

The divorce rate is the 3rd highest in the state in Virginia. While we didn’t scrape Twitter for mentions of “hate my ex”, we did see a higher than average number of Tweets coming from this area with #drunk in them.

Do hockey players drink a lot? Okay, maybe that’s a rhetorical question. But we happened to see that there were a lot of former/retired hockey players from Virginia. At least they have that.

5. Detroit Lakes

Detroit Lakes, MN

Source: Wikipedia User UMINN44 Uploaded by UMINN44 at en.wikipedia | CC BY-SA 3.0

Population: 8,615
Divorce rate: 2nd highest in the state
Bars per capita: 1st in the state
Liquor stores per capita: 20th in Wisconsin

Holy matrimony, Detroit Lakes! More than 1 in 6 of you are divorced, which is the 2nd highest number in the state of Minnesota! Is it something in the water up there? Like maybe some whiskey?

No wonder you all have the most bars per capita. Someone should just open up a bar within the courthouse up there. They’d kill it.

Since it’s been proven that alcohol is a major factor in divorce, we’re going to assume that the people in Detroit Lakes are drinking a lot more than their peers. Why not? You just got dumped, so go out and toss a few back to drown your sorrows. Maybe the next Mrs. You is sitting at the other end of the bar just waiting for you to talk to her.

6. Alexandria

Alexandria, MN

Source: Wikipedia User Omar David Sandoval Sida | CC BY-SA 3.0

Population: 11,260
Divorce rate: 12%
Bars per capita: 14th in the state
Liquor stores per capita: 15th in Minnesota

The city’s motto for Alexandria is “Easy To Get To. Hard To Leave.” Yeah no kidding. After you’ve had about 12 IPAs and two shots, you’ll most likely be staying right where you are for the night. That should be the motto for every bar in Alexandria.

So, residents of Alexandria, you drink a lot. But you don’t have a high enough divorce rate to crack the top 5.

Here’s to that!

7. Bemidji

Bemidji, MN

Source: Wikipedia User Crash over ride at English Wikipedia | GFDL

Population: 13,485
Divorce rate: 11%
Bars per capita: 10th in the state
Liquor stores per capita: 8th in Minnesota

Bemidji. Try saying that 10 times in a row after you’ve had 3 martinis. In fact, the name of the place sounds like someone is drunk saying it.

They have the 8th most liquor stores per capita, and the 10th most bars in the state in Bemidji. And, when scraping Twitter, we saw a total of 10 Tweets from the Bemidji area which mentioned #drunk or #party. Two of which were referring to a kid’s birthday party.

But hey, a party is a party right? Any chance to throw one back, Bemidjians.

8. Duluth

Duluth, MN

Source: Wikipedia User Sletbte | CC BY-SA 3.0

Population: 86,239
Divorce rate: 11%
Bars per capita: 9th in the state
Drunk tweets per capita: 2nd in the state

Public service announcement: Stay off the roads in Duluth after dark. Or just about any time of day, really. That’s what Twitter data says.

There were a startling number of Tweets coming from the Duluth area that talked about people who were drinking and driving, or calling people out for being drunk in public. Google it. It’s worth a chuckle.

These two gems stood out to us: “Just saw some drunk guys knock over a traffic and sprint away yelling about how hardcore they were. Look out Duluth!”


“Duluth needs a dave and busters. I wanna get drunk eat food and play video games. I already do but I wanna do it in public”

9. Minneapolis

Minneapolis, MN

Source: Wikipedia User Bobak Ha’Eri | CC BY 3.0

Population: 385,023
Divorce rate: 10%
Bars per capita: 2nd in the state
Liquor stores per capita: 14th in Minnesota

Of course, Minneapolis has the most drinkers in the state. They have the most bars and the most liquor stores. But per capita, not so much. And the divorce rate here is really low. Did the Wild have a good year in 2015 or what? Not so much bickering coming from this part of the state.

Minneapolis residents might turn their red noses up at this data and simply insist that they have to be the biggest drunks in the state. Go ahead and stand up on the bar and yell it out loud, guys. In fact, why not call your buddies over from Wisconsin and let them show you how it’s done.

10. Cambridge

Cambridge, MN

Source: Wikipedia User Elkman | CC BY-SA 3.0

Population: 8,088
Divorce rate: 12%
Liquor stores per capita: 18th in Minnesota
Bars per capita: 20th in the state

Ha ha, dad joke coming. Cambridge is located right along the Rum River. The Rum River flows right through downtown. So, forget about the number of liquor stores and bars in the area. You don’t need any of it. You have a rum river in which to drown your sorrows in.

But hey, you guys have your fun. God Bless America.

There You Have It

If you’re measuring the locations in Minnesota where there are a high number of divorced people, bars and liquor stores, and where people are talking about drinking the most often, this is an accurate list.

And while you might think the larger cities and college towns are more drunk’ than these places, when you measure the percentage of people who have access to alcohol, and who are separated, it makes sense. Cause, the data never lies, does it?

  1. Shorewood
  2. St. Michael
  3. Orono
  4. Minnetrista
  5. St. Peter

For more reading on Minnesota, check out:

About Nick Johnson

Nick Johnson earned his masters in Business Administration from the Drucker School At Claremont Graduate University. He has written for 39 publications across the country and ran the media relations department at Movoto, a real estate portal based in San Francisco. He has been featured in over 500 publications as an expert in real estate and as an authority on real estate trends.

Nick's the creator of the HomeSnacks YouTube channel that now has over 260,000 subscribers and is an excellent source to learn about different parts of the country.

2 thoughts on “The 10 Drunkest Cities In Minnesota For 2024

  1. The key statistic being left out in this analysis is the number of non- residents (aka tourists) that frequent these listed municipalities and skew the representative population. I’m sorry but your research doesn’t account for the influx of tourists artificially inflating the population so your number of bars per capita is inaccurate

  2. Huh. Red Wing? Seriously? The liquor store next to Randy’s closed due to lack of business. Main Street has a wine bar now. Stags head was closed for so many years. The only liquor store that comes to mind in MGM. Just got the pizza and brew place house a few years back. The Brickhouse closed. The ale house closed. Number one – makes no sense. I wish it did – but it dosent.

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