The 10 Drunkest Cities In Tennessee For 2024

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

Is there anything wrong with being called the drunkest city in your state? Especially in Tennessee, which makes whiskey legally and manufactures all that moonshine illegally. It’s pretty clear that many of you like to get your drink on just about every chance you can in the Volunteer State.

That is if you don’t live in a dry county.

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 Tennessee, and then put out a list.

Because, the data never lies, does it? You’re probably thinking Show me the proof!”

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 Tennessee:

Many of these are mid-size cities in Tennessee 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 Tennessee, check out:

What drunken criteria did we use?

In order to rank the drunkest cities in Tennessee, 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. Pulaski

Pulaski, TN

Source: Wikipedia User Ichabod | CC BY-SA 3.0

Population: 7,850
Divorce rate: 8th highest in the state
Bars per capita: 14th in the state
Liquor stores per capita: 5th in Tennessee

Hot damn, Pulaski, you are tore up from the floor up! We’re impressed. Based on the data, it sounds like you are all having a really, really good time.

When you have the 5th most liquor stores per capita in the state, and the 14th most bars, it’s pretty obvious that you all like to get your drink on. And, when you consider that 19% of you are divorced, it’s clear that there’s a lot ofdown time at your house.

Pulaski is about an hour south of Nashville.

2. Newport

Newport, TN

Source: Wikipedia User Brian Stansberry | GFDL

Population: 6,938
Divorce rate: 5th highest in Tennessee
Bars per capita: 12th in the state
Liquor stores per capita: 12th in the state

We’re not sure if the drinking was the reason that nearly 1 in 5 people in Newport headed towards splitsville, or if the Big D is the reason so many bars are needed, but let’s face it. Many, many people down here near the North Carolina line are drinking lots.

While we didn’t scrape Twitter for “hate my ex” in Newport, we did see this interesting note: Newport was one of the key transport towns for moonshine during the prohibition days.

The thirst for liquor there continues today.

3. Pigeon Forge

Pigeon Forge, TN

Source: Wikipedia User Edward C. Denny | GFDL

Population: 5,917
Divorce rate: 14%
Bars per capita: 1st
Liquor stores per capita: 3rd

Here’s what’s interesting about Pigeon Forge – it’s been a long winding road for the drinkers of Pigeon Forge, and the business that cater to them. Recently, they allowed liquor by the glass’ to be served. And Sevier is no longer a dry county, either.

You know there’s a ton of really heavy drinkers here, if they were so motivated as to get their city to change a law so that they could drink more.

And if you’ve ever passed through the wonderland that is Pigeon Forge, you’d know that this area is just booming. And now that restaurants are free to pour to as many boozy patrons as they want, the number of places to get shnockered is just going to explode.

Bravo, Pigeon Forge.

4. Alcoa

Alcoa, TN

Source: Wikipedia User Brian Stansberry | GFDL

Population: 8,498
Divorce rate: 15th highest in TN
Bars per capita: 2nd
Liquor stores per capita: 25th

If you’re hungover while reading this in Alcoa, we certainly understand. After all, you have the 2nd most bars per capita in the state of Tennessee. With all of those distractions in your area, how do we expect you to keep it all together?

Just south of Knoxville, Alcoa residents are divorced at a 16% clip. We understand that drinking is a way to make people – or yourself – more interesting. Sounds like you guys are the most interesting people around.

5. Cookeville

Cookeville, TN

Source: Wikipedia User Brian Stansberry | CC BY 3.0

Population: 30,439
Divorce rate: 15%
Bars per capita: 11th in the state
Liquor stores per capita: 1st in Tennessee

Hey now. When nearly 1 in 6 of you saw your marriages crumble, and you live in a place that has more liquor stores per capita in the state, what do we expect you to do? Hit the bottle!

We have a feeling that for a lot of Cookeville residents, their check liver’ light probably comes on fairly often. But hey – get out there and continue meeting new people. Who knows. The next Mrs. You might be sitting right across the bar. Give her a wink.

And work on getting rid of the tan line on your wedding finger. That’s so desperate.

6. Millington

Millington, TN

Source: Wikipedia User Thomas R Machnitzki | GFDL

Population: 10,337
Divorce rate: 43rd in the state
Bars per capita: 7th in the state
Liquor stores per capita: 9th in Tennessee

Impressive, Millington. Despite having one of the highest concentrations of bars and liquor stores in the state, ya’ll have done a great job of keeping your marriages in tact. At least, 85% of you have, which is pretty decent considering that many of you are plowed every weekend.

Maybe alcohol is the glue to your marriage, or ya’ll are just patient. Or maybe there are lots of marriage counselors in town? At any rate, here’s to another year!

7. Paris

Paris, TN

Source: Public domain

Population: 10,139
Divorce rate: 1st in Tennessee
Bars per capita: 20th in TN
Liquor stores per capita: 6th in the state

Holy matrimony, Paris. Didn’t ya’ll read the fine print? It says, “To death do us part.” Not, “till death, or until we decide that drinking booze is more important, do us part.” But hey, it’s not up to us to judge you. After all, if 22% of you have decided that your spouse is simply never going to change, then you gotta do what you gotta do.

There are plenty of pain relievers in the area, as we’re sure you’ve realized at this point. You’re probably heading over to one tonight to tell the barkeep to filler up.’

8. Fayetteville

Fayetteville, TN

Source: Wikipedia User Ichabod | CC BY-SA 3.0

Population: 6,887
Divorce rate: 19%
Bars per capita: 13th in the state
Liquor stores per capita: 8th

Hey Fayetteville, what’s up with the high divorce rate? Is she the whiskey in your water or do you prefer whiskey in your water to her?

We saw a lot of drunk-related tweets coming from the Fayetteville area. Including this gem:

“I’m glad to be ministering at hope assembly in Fayetteville Tennessee this weekend! Let’s party!!!”

Wow, when the minister is down to get down, then you know it must be a happenin’ town.

9. Crossville

Crossville, TN

Source: Wikipedia User Brian Stansberry | GFDL

Population: 10,894
Divorce rate: 20%
Bars per capita: 12th in the state
Liquor stores per capita: 25th in Tennessee

If you’re heading along I-40 between Nashville and Knoxville, you’ll come to the little city of Crossville. Pull over and say hello. Someone will probably buy you a shot.

Crossville calls itself the golf capital of Tennessee. Everyone knows that nothing goes better with a game of golf than a case of beer. And, perhaps the distraction of having 17 million golf courses in the area is one reason that the divorce rate is so high.

A bad golf game and a bad marriage can be very frustrating things to overcome.

We also spotted this gem on Twitter:

“I’m not drunk at 4:30 in a Walmart in Crossville, Tennessee. I swear.”


10. Knoxville

Knoxville, TN

Source: Wikipedia User Nathan C. Fortner | GFDL

Population: 179,973
Divorce rate: 57th highest
Liquor stores per capita: 11h in Tennessee
Bars per capita: 5th in the state

Hardcore Knoxville drinkers are probably surprised that they didn’t finish higher up on this list. When you have the 5th most bars per capita and the 11th most liquor stores in the state, per capita, you know there’s a whole lot of drinkin goin on.

See, your divorce rate is really low here. But you know the saying, “Tequila: Helping women lower their standards for years.”

There You Have It

If you’re measuring the locations in Tennessee 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. Tellico Village
  2. Fairfield Glade
  3. Collegedale
  4. Middle Valley )
  5. Lakeland

For more reading on Tennessee, 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 Tennessee For 2024

  1. The shamrock pub from Newport is actually the Newport plain talk newspaper building, so google maps screwed up.

  2. The picture that is supposedly Morrie’s Tavern is not Morrie’s nor is that street in Millington.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *