When hockey was first introduced, it wasn’t a renowned sport or a super-popular one. In fact, its fans were mainly just relegated to the Northeast and the Midwest. Over the years, though, hockey has Smart Asset was so curious that it actually conducted a study to pinpoint these hockey-loving towns.
The study looked at 129 different towns; the towns were selected based on the fact that each one had at least one team competing in one of the two top minor leagues. Once the towns were selected, the study looked at various factors such as available entertainment in each town, crime rates, income levels, and unemployment in order to determine each town’s overall “quality of life.” This was then coupled with a “fan-intensity score” based on per-game attendance for local hockey games and hockey-related Google searches. When all was said and done, the researchers were able to come up with their picks as to which hockey towns were the very best, and we’ve highlighted a few of them here.
Grand Forks, North Dakota
One great place to be for hockey fans is Grand Forks, North Dakota. A big part of the reason is because the town is home to the University of North Dakota and its NCAA hockey program, which has merited 15 conference championships, appearances in the Frozen Four, seven national championship wins, and more. Furthermore, according to the study, everyone in town is pretty much a hockey nut. People who live there search online for more hockey related terms than they do food related terms, and the city also has a wonderfully low unemployment rate. Sounds like a pretty good place to make a life, doesn’t it?
Hanover, New Hampshire
Another college town, Hanover, makes the list. This town, home to the Dartmouth Big Green, is wonderfully quaint and small. However, you’d never know it by the turnout at the hockey games. About a quarter of the town, on average, shows up to each game! Crime rates are low, and hockey fan numbers are high; what could be better?
Lewiston, New York
It’s thanks to the Niagara Purple Eagles that Lewiston is on the list. This upstate New York town, nestled close to Canada, has a young but vibrant hockey team. The Eagles have won their conference four times and, as a result, have loads of fan in town. The town also has the privilege of being the safest one in the study, making it a truly great place to live for all who love hockey.
These aren’t the only towns that made the list, but they’re some of our favorites! The other list-makers include:
· Duluth, Minnesota
· Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
· Marquette, Michigan
· Fairbanks, Alaska
· Hershey Pennsylvania
· Houghton, Michigan
· Glens Falls, New York