These Are The 10 Most Redneck Cities In Iowa


We used science and data to determine which cities in Iowa are redneck heaven.

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Is there anything really wrong with being called an Iowa redneck? Sure, every state has them. While they might be defined with a different criteria in other states, there’s plenty of them all over The Hawkeye State.

Wait. What is a redneck anyways? Well, according to the official bible of literature, the Merriam-Webster Dictionary, a redneck is:

“A white person who lives in a small town or in the country especially in the southern U.S., who typically has a working-class job, and who is seen by others as being uneducated and having opinions and attitudes that are offensive.”

Plus, we thought why not add in a few stereotypes? Cause, you know, rednecks like to hunt, fish, drink, smoke and shoot things. And shop at Walmart.

Using that criteria, it’s not hard to scrape the internet, run some scientific data on where the most members of the Iowa redneck family tree most likely live. Most of these places probably won’t surprise you.

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 Most Redneck Cities in Iowa:

  1. Fort Dodge (Photos)
  2. Spirit Lake
  3. Denison (Photos)
  4. Bloomfield
  5. West Liberty
  6. Missouri Valley
  7. Fort Madison (Photos)
  8. Red Oak (Photos)
  9. Maquoketa (Photos)
  10. Osceola

Read on below to see where your town ranked.

For more Iowa reading, check out:

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What redneck criteria did we use?

In order to rank the most redneck cities in Iowa, we had to determine what criteria makes a redneck.

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

The dictionary definition categories

  • Small towns
  • Least amount of high school graduates

And the stereotypical categories

  • Number of bars per city
  • Number of mobile home parks per capita
  • Number of tobacco stores per city
  • Number of places to get fishing gear
  • Number of guns and ammo stores per city
  • Walmarts, Golden Corrals, Bass Pro Shops, and dollar stores nearby

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

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1. Fort Dodge

Community Tavern, Fort Dodge, IA. Google Maps

Population: 25,109
Adults that completed HS: 79%
Fishing/bait shops: 16th in Iowa
Tobacco stores per capita: 17th in IA
Bars per capita: 18th

Whoo-whee, Fort Dodge! You have the official bragging rights as being named the most redneck city in the entire state of Iowa. You may now brag to your friends and share this endlessly on your Facebook walls.

Let’s see why. Whelp, in Fort Dodge, you’ve got plenty of bars, and lots of places to get chew. And, there’s lots of places in the area to get bait, too.

You can see why. The Des Moines River flows right through town. And, they have the Brushy Creek Recreation Area nearby, where a redneck can shoot at all sorts of things like quail, pheasants, rabbit and coon.

And, when 2 out of 10 people here didn’t bother to finish high school, you can imagine that this place is crawling with rednecks. Let’s just call it redneck central.

2. Spirit Lake

Stan’s Bait Shop, near Spirit Lake, IA. Google Maps

Population: 4,830
Fishing/bait shops per capita: 2nd in Iowa
Chew factor: 4
Walmart rank: 1st in the state

Yes, siree, there’s plenty of rednecks in Spirit Lake, which is located right along the Minnesota state line. Spirit Lake is smack dab of the middle of three lakes, so you know there’s plenty of fishing here.

The number of tobacco stores, per capita, is one of the highest in Iowa. We call it the chew factor. In Spirit Lake, the chew factor is a 4.

Every redneck town needs a Walmart. Spirit Lake sure does. For a redneck, having your own Walmart is like short lines at Disneyland.

You can imagine how many barefoot rednecks stumble into the Spirit Lake Walmart at 10 pm looking for a case of Busch Light and cheap bait.

3. Denison

Prime Times Lounge, Denison, IA. Google Maps.

Population: 8,253
Adults that completed HS: 62%
Bars per capita: 15th in Iowa
Chew factor: 11th in the state

Wow rednecks of Denison. We know what you were doing when your Iowa peers were sitting in math class on Monday morning. Just think – if more of you had done more redneck stuff like shooting guns and getting stuck in the mud as teens – you might have won this whole thing.

As it stands, 4 out of 10 necks in Denison dropped out.

There are also a higher number of places to get drunk and buy smokes in Denison than in a lot of other places in Iowa. That’s so redneck.

4. Bloomfield

Bloomfield, IA. Google Maps

Population: 2,619
Chew factor: 10
Bars per capita: 4th in Iowa
Mobile home parks per capita: 5th in the state

Tiny ole’ Bloomfield. 99% white, and very blue collar. It’s located in the southeast corner of the state. You can bet just about every single person here is some shade of neck.

They’ve got everything a redneck needs. Trailer parks, a bar, a tobacco store, a Dollar General. The only thing they don’t have is a Walmart. But that’s okay. It gives dad a reason to fire up the Ford or Chevy and truck into town every now and then.

Who knows, maybe they’ll see some deer along the way. Deer have no chance in hell in this part of Iowa. None at all.

5. West Liberty

Dollar General, West Liberty, IA. Google Maps

Population: 3,710
Adults that completed HS: 76%
Bars per capita: 6th in Iowa
Dollar stores per capita: 6th

West Liberty is about 2 or 6 beers east of Iowa City, smack dab between Iowa City and Davenport. You can bet when there’s a sale on camo in Iowa City, or when Golden Corral has a buy one special in Davenport, the entire town of West Liberty is probably a ghost town.

There’s simply no excuse for showing up to a West Liberty barbecue empty handed. They have plenty of dollar stores in the area.

6. Missouri Valley

Double Barrel Shooters Supply, Missouri Valley, IA. Google Maps

Population: 2,822
Gun stores per capita: 4th in Iowa
Bars per capita: 8th in the state
Fishing/bait shops per capita: 8th in the state

Baby rednecks born in Missouri Valley will one day get in the truck and make the short trip into Omaha to see the ‘big city’ After all, there’s no Walmart in Missouri Valley, so at times, they need to truck into town to stock up.

But for the rest of the time, there’s simply no need to leave town. They probably even have deer walk right up onto their driveways here.

7. Fort Madison

Kinnick South Sports Bar, Fort Madison, IA. Google Maps

Population: 11,022
Gun stores per capita: 15th in Iowa
Chew factor: 2
Dollar stores per capita: 12th

Fort Madison, Iowa. Right on the banks of the Mississippi River. Where you’ve got needlessly big trucks, country music lovers, and some real sharp shooters. Nearby is the Shimek State Forest, where squirrel, rabbits, quail, frogs, bugs…nothin’ has a chance in hell in these parts.

Fort Madison has a number of dollar stores, tobacco stores and bars in the general area too.

8. Red Oak

East Nishnabotna River, Red Oak, IA. Google Maps

Population: 5,710
Adults that completed HS: 76%
Mobile home parks per capita: 10th in Iowa
Bars per capita: 12th in Iowa

Here in Red Oak, you’ve got 1 out of 4 people walking around without a high school education, and a bunch of rednecks geeked up to go out and hunt in the nearby Anderson Wildlife Area.

Plus, it’s right on the banks of the East Nishnabotna River, which has some of the biggest catfish in the state. What does a redneck do with a catfish? What do you think they do. They stick their hands down its throat and take a picture with it.

9. Maquoketa

Perxactly Bar & Grill, Maquoketa, IA. Google Maps

Population: 6,113
Chew factor: 9
Dollar stores per capita: 2nd in Iowa
Fishing/bait shops per capita: 12th

Right on the banks of the Maquoketa River is the redneck enclave of Maquoketa. Not only are there endless places to fish along the river, there are also lots of other smaller lakes and creeks in the area.

They might be on private land. But when did a ‘No Fishing’ sign ever stop a redneck?

They don’t build a dollar store where there aren’t customers. In Maquoketa, there are 3 of them.

Nearby is the Prairie Creek Recreation Area, which has some great bow hunting. And Walmart is practically right next door. In fact, rednecks here can probably pluck coons out of the Walmart parking lot from their tailgates.

10. Osceola

Dollar Store, Osceola, IA. Google Maps

Population: 4,948
Walmart rank: 8th in Iowa
Adults that completed HS: 76%
% that’s white: 100

Osceola is just crawling with necks. It’s 100% white (is that even possible?) and 1 in 4 residents here dropped out.

Osceola might be the kissing cousins of Bloomfield. They’re not too far apart, and have similar characteristics. Maybe they meet in the middle at Rathburn Lake and camp out on the weekends.

What a sight. You can probably hear the shells a flyin’ for miles and miles.

God Bless America.

There You Have It

According to the official dictionary definition of a redneck, and based on stereotypes that the internet says are true, using science to determine the most redneck cities in a state can’t be too far off. If you’re analyzing smaller cities in Iowa with blue collar workers, where people have lots of options for drinking, fishing, hunting and Walmarting, this is an accurate list.

We also wrote a story on the 10 worst cities in Iowa if you haven’t seen it yet. Click here to read it.

City Population Rank
Fort Dodge 25109 1
Spirit Lake 4830 2
Denison 8253 3
Bloomfield 2619 4
West Liberty 3710 5
Missouri Valley 2822 6
Fort Madison 11022 7
Red Oak 5710 8
Maquoketa 6113 9
Osceola 4948 10
Tipton 3206 11
Shenandoah 5144 12
Chariton 4333 13
West Burlington 2968 14
West Union 2683 15
Estherville 6318 16
Belle Plaine 2560 17
Williamsburg 3060 18
Sibley 2761 19
Dyersville 4093 20
Storm Lake 10541 21
Story City 3416 22
Albia 3772 23
Tama 2871 24
Hampton 4438 25
Rock Valley 3369 26
Manchester 5160 27
Centerville 5519 27
Decorah 8097 29
Anamosa 5605 30
Hiawatha 7046 31
Perry 7828 32
Vinton 5253 33
Hawarden 2545 34
Emmetsburg 3874 35
Atlantic 7040 36
Keokuk 10757 37
Kalona 2544 38
Osage 3615 39
Sioux Center 7055 40
Lamoni 2708 41
Le Claire 3737 42
Onawa 2985 43
Garner 3109 44
Mount Pleasant 8737 45
Fairfield 9462 46
Glenwood 5276 47
West Branch 2606 48
New Hampton 3565 49
Cherokee 5196 50
Carter Lake 3743 51
Cresco 3873 52
Oskaloosa 11494 53
Knoxville 7353 54
Coralville 18931 55
Clarinda 5535 55
Newton 15234 57
Washington 7277 58
Rock Rapids 2552 59
Clarion 2819 60
Jefferson 4329 61
Le Mars 9765 62
Independence 5988 63
Oelwein 6408 64
Grinnell 9205 64
Carroll 10057 66
Jesup 2883 67
Mount Vernon 4498 68
Ottumwa 24849 69
Marengo 2841 70
Muscatine 22915 71
Grundy Center 2694 72
Camanche 4429 73
Winterset 5170 74
Forest City 4142 75
Algona 5534 76
Humboldt 4671 77
Waukon 3886 78
La Porte City 2554 79
Creston 7821 80
De Witt 5299 81
Clive 15557 82
Pella 10365 83
Evansdale 4741 84
Johnston 17316 85
Sheldon 5096 86
Boone 12658 86
Eldridge 5630 88
Huxley 3270 89
Webster City 8024 90
Nevada 6795 91
Harlan 5098 92
Waverly 9881 93
Bondurant 3891 94
Iowa Falls 5186 95
Spencer 11204 96
Monticello 3792 97
Eldora 2727 98
Orange City 6054 99
Madrid 2539 100

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13 thoughts on “These Are The 10 Most Redneck Cities In Iowa

  1. I am from Fort Dodge. I can absolutely assure you this town is NOT redneck. It is full of thug wannabes, criminals, and it’s terrible. Maybe do more research before you make such disgusting claims. This is an insult to actual Iowa rednecks. Along with all the other crap on your list.

    1. Are you sure you’re not a redneck? You’re taking this list pretty seriously, which is something a redneck would probably do.

  2. Listen, I am FROM Missouri Valley, and I just had to say that you are CLEARLY misinformed about that place. It’s also full of methheads.

  3. I wouldn’t consider Spirit Lake redneck for those criteria since it’s a vacation area. Bait shops, bars, and tobacco outlets kinda go hand-in-hand with a lake vacation area.
    I also wouldn’t look at the largest populated areas for redneck towns. Try keeping the search to populations of 15,000 and under and you’ll find more accurate results. I don’t know how the criteria are weighted but it appears that might want to be revisited. Just a thought.

  4. No Harpers Ferry? No communities under multiple thousand?

    This list is bunk. How can Decorah, Grinnell, and Mount Pleasant be more redneck than Boone? Simply not possible.

    I think your data methods might be crossing over into the realm oh private colleges full of millennials…..should’ve used chewing tobacco sales instead of cigrits

  5. Being a graduate from Denison Iowa #3 which said the Graduation Rate was 62% but your information is false.

    Cyt and paste to prove the Graduation Rate is 92%. Went from Funny to Lame when you fudge the numbers………..

    1. As the criteria section explains, it’s the % of adults with less than a high school degree, not the current high school graduation rate.

  6. Clive? bahahahaha That’s such a wannabe “city”, but there’s nothing redneck about it to even put it in the top 100. It’s just preppy wannabes who think they belong with the West Des Moines elite.

  7. West Des Moines is a wannabe Clive, IA. Last time I checked they make $20k more per year on median household income. It is now ranked the city with the highest income in all of Iowa per household.

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