Is there anything wrong with being called the drunkest city in your state?
Especially in Wisconsin, which has been called one of the booziest states in the country. It’s pretty clear that you all like to get your drink on just about every chance you can get up there in The Big Cheese.
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 Wisconsin, 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 Wisconsin:
- Pewaukee (Photos)
- Rhinelander (Photos)
- Lake Geneva (Photos)
- Sturgeon Bay (Photos)
- Waupaca (Photos)
- Marinette (Photos)
- Delavan (Photos)
- Rice Lake
- Prairie du Chien (Photos)
- Tomah (Photos)
Many of these are smaller cities in Wisconsin 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. And remember, be safe when you drink.
What drunken criteria did we use?
In order to rank the drunkest cities in Wisconsin, 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 area: #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.
Divorce rate: 14th highest in the state
Bars per capita: 4th in the state
Liquor stores per capita: 1st in Wisconsin
Wow, Pewaukee, 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 more liquor stores per capita than anyone else in the state, that says a lot about alcohol sales in the area. Sure, larger cities have way more liquor stores, but you guys have more per person. You beer hoggers.
Pewaukee is just a 20 minute drive west of Milwaukee (but Pewaukee folks all probably know the back roads, right? Wink, wink).
The number of drunk tweets coming from this general area was limited. We counted just 4 in the last 7 days.
Divorce rate: 8th highest in the state
Bars per capita: 1st in Wisconsin
Liquor stores per capita: 4th in the state
When you have a population that’s 15% divorced, and more bars per capita, what do you think is gonna happen? People are drinking a lot. Either drinking was a reason for some of the divorces or people are drinking a lot to mask the pain/meet new people, but it’s clear based on the data that lots of people in Rhinelander are drinking a lot.
Rhinelander is located way up in the northern section of the state, where there’s probably nothing much else to do for months on end. Except drink.
3. Lake Geneva
Divorce rate: 14.3%
Bars per capita: 5th in the state
Liquor stores per capita: 8th in Wisconsin
There’s an unconfirmed rumor on the web that the Lake Geneva area was used by Al Capone’s cronies as an area to smuggle illegal booze during the prohibition days. It makes sense, because the Lake Geneva area shows some strong signs that alcohol is still a factor in the area to this day.
Lake Geneva, almost halfway between Chicago and Milwaukee, has the 5th most bars per capita and the 8th most liquor stores per person in the state. Plus, it’s halfway between Chicago and Milwaukee, meaning it’s a perfect place for people to pull over and have a few.
4. Sturgeon Bay
Divorce rate: 14.8%
Bars per capita: 8th in the state
Liquor stores per capita: 6th in Wisconsin
Sturgeon Bay is nicknamed ‘Wisconsin’s Friendliest Town.’ That’s because a lot of people are buzzed all the time. At least they aren’t angry drunks.
Located a short drive north of Green Bay, this small city is pretty isolated. But they make up for it with the sheer number of places to get popped. This area has the 8th most bars per capita and the 6th most liquor stores per capita.
The divorce rate is the 12th highest in the state in Sturgeon Bay. 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 #bar in them.
Divorce rate: 22%
Bars per capita: 10th in the state
Liquor stores per capita: 9th in Wisconsin
Holy matrimony, Waupaca! More than 1 in 5 of you are divorced, which by far, the highest number in the state of Wisconsin! Is it something in the water up there? Like maybe some whiskey?
Since it’s been proven that alcohol is a major factor in divorce, we’re going to assume that the people in Waupaca 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.
Divorce rate: 17%
Bars per capita: 25th in the state
Liquor stores per capita: 19th in Wisconsin
Right behind Waupaca with the number of divorcees is Marinette, which is surprisingly the largest city to make this list. Therefore, Marinette can debate this till their noses turn red, claiming that they should be the drunkest city in Wisconsin, since they have the most people.
Sorry, it’s not the case, residents of Marinette. Yes, you drink a lot (even more so than most of the rest of the state). But you don’t have enough bars and liquor stores to crack the top 5.
Here’s to ranking higher next year!
Divorce rate: 13%
Bars per capita: 15th in the state
Liquor stores per capita: 3rd in Wisconsin
Not too far away from Lake Geneva is the small city of Delavan. In fact, it’s so close that they could comfortably drive back and forth with a slight buzz.
They have the 3rd most liquor stores per capita than anyone else in the state in Delavan. And, when scraping Twitter, we saw a total of 14 Tweets from the Delavan 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, Delavanians.
8. Rice Lake
Divorce rate: 15%
Bars per capita: 19th in the state
Liquor stores per capita: 7th in Wisconsin
Public service announcement: Stay out of the water on Rice Lake. There are lots of divorcees with mixed drinks driving their boats around all summer. At least that’s what the data says.
Rice Lake is located way out on Route 53 north of Eau Claire. And, there must have been a big party out there last week, since we saw 9 Tweets that mentioned either #Beer or #Cocktails, which was one of the highest numbers outside of a major city.
We looked on the Rice Lake’s event calendar, but the nearby Rutabaga Festival isn’t until this weekend. Maybe some Rutabaga pre-partying going on up there? You guys making some rutabaga martinis or what?
9. Prairie du Chien
Divorce rate: 14%
Bars per capita: 7th in the state
Liquor stores per capita: 2nd in Wisconsin
Little ol Prairie du Chien is way out on the Iowa border, so, first off, you know it’s boring there. And, based on the number of liquor stores and divorced people, there’s a lot of drowned souls in this area.
We did notice a funny Tweet that came from the Prairie du Chien area. It read: “Wisconsin weather drunk per usual.” But this is August. Is it always drinking weather up there?
On a side note: We also noticed lots of references from all cities for the term, ‘Getting Wisconsin drunk.’ We’re surmising that means drinking a lot.
Divorce rate: 15%
Drunk tweets per capita: 7th in the state
Liquor stores per capita: 18th in Wisconsin
Just where is this small place where people are seemingly drinking more than most other people in the state? Tomah is on I-90 east of La Crosse. Here, there aren’t a huge number of bars and liquor stores per capita, but they sure do have lots of ways to express their feelings on Twitter.
We saw the phrase “Wisconsin drunk” mentioned 8 times in a week from this general area, including someone who mentioned that ‘it’s way too easy to stay drunk in Wisconsin.’
But hey, you guys have your fun. God Bless America.
There You Have It
If you’re measuring the locations in Wisconsin 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?
If you’re curious enough, here are the least drunk places in Wisconsin. Or the most sober, if you will:
- Vernon (Pop. 7,610)
- Buchanan (Pop. 6,801)
- Tichigan (Pop. 5,253)
- Richfield (Washington County) – Pop. 11,305
- Rib Mountain (Pop. 5,537)
We actually did you guys in Wisconsin a favor. We wrote a story, “The 10 Easiest Cities To Get Laid In Wisconsin“. It’s based on science. Enjoy.
Or, you can watch this totally random video of some Wisconsin guy singing his heart out about cheese. Hi-LAR-ious.