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List of city nicknames in the United States

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Reno, Nevada proudly displays its nickname as "The Biggest Little City in the World" on a large sign above a downtown street.

This partial list of city nicknames in the United States compiles the aliases, sobriquets and slogans that cities are known by (or have been known by historically), officially and unofficially, to municipal governments, local people, outsiders or their tourism boards or chambers of commerce.

City nicknames can help establish a civic identity, help outsiders recognize a community, attract people to a community because of its nickname, promote civic pride, and build community unity.[1] Nicknames and slogans that successfully create a new community "ideology or myth"[2] are also believed to have economic value.[1] This value is difficult to measure,[1] but there are anecdotal reports of cities that have achieved substantial economic benefits by "branding" themselves by adopting new slogans.[2]

In 2005 the consultancy Tagline Guru conducted a small survey of professionals in the fields of branding, marketing, and advertising aimed at identifying the "best" U.S. city slogans and nicknames. Participants were asked to evaluate about 800 nicknames and 400 slogans, considering several criteria in their assessments. The assigned criteria were: whether the nickname or slogan expresses the "brand character, affinity, style, and personality" of the city, whether it "tells a story in a clever, fun, and memorable way," uniqueness and originality, and whether it "inspires you to visit there, live there, or learn more."[3]

The top-ranked nickname in the survey was New York City's "The Big Apple," followed by "Sin City" (Las Vegas), "The Big Easy" (New Orleans), "Motor City" (Detroit), and "The Windy City" (Chicago). In addition to the number-two nickname, Las Vegas had the top-rated slogan: "What Happens Here, Stays Here." The second- through fifth-place slogans were "So Very Virginia" (Charlottesville, Virginia), "Always Turned On" (Atlantic City, New Jersey), "Cleveland Rocks!" (Cleveland, Ohio), and "The Sweetest Place on Earth" (Hershey, Pennsylvania).[3]

Some unofficial nicknames are positive, while others are derisive. The unofficial nicknames listed here have been in use for a long time or have gained wide currency.

Contents

Alabama

Alaska

Homer's welcome sign proclaims its nickname.

Arizona


Arkansas


California


A

B

People's Park in Berkeley was a center of 1960s counterculture activity remembered in the sobriquet "The People's Republic of Berkeley."

C

Castroville's nickname celebrates its status as a producer of artichokes.

D

Dinuba, Fallbrook, and Selma have nicknames that celebrate the production of raisins.

F

G

Garlic ice cream is given away at the annual Garlic Festival in Gilroy, nicknamed Garlic Capital of the World.

H

I

L

M

N

O

P

Close-up view of one of the flower-bedecked floats in the annual Tournament of Roses Parade in Pasadena, which calls itself the City of Roses.

R

S

Solvang's architecture reflects the Danish heritage celebrated by its nickname, Danish capital of America.

T

V

W

Y


Colorado


A

B

C

D

E

F

G

L

M

N

O

P

S

T

V

W

Connecticut


Delaware


Florida


Georgia


Hawaii

Hilo
America’s Wettest City[467]
Orchid Capital[467]
Honolulu
The Big Pineapple
Pacific Diamond [468]


Idaho


Illinois


Indiana

The nickname "Athens of the Prairie" was bestowed on Columbus, Indiana, due to the large assemblage of contemporary architecture and public sculpture in the city, including Henry Moore's "Large Arch."

Iowa


Kansas


Kentucky

Nicknames for Lexington and Louisville celebrate the Bluegrass Region's horse farms and the state's most famous horse race, the Kentucky Derby, held at Churchill Downs in Louisville.

Louisiana

Maine

Maryland

Massachusetts

Michigan

Nicknames for Eau Claire and Traverse City are a reminder that cherries are an important crop in Michigan.

Minnesota

Mississippi


Missouri


Montana

  • Billings
    • The Magic City[923]
    • Montana's Trailhead[924]
    • Montana's City[925]
    • Star of the Big Sky Country[926]
    • B-Town. A recently-trending, popular unofficial nickname for Billings is "B-Town". Although the names of three of Montana's largest cities, Billings, Bozeman, & Butte all start with "B", Billings is the city associated, especially on social media, with the nickname "B-town". Another example of Billings' interesting monopoly of the letter "B" in its monikers can be found in reference to MSU-B, née Eastern Montana University, the largest college or university in Billings, which merged, as part of the 1994 reorganization of Montana's state university system, with Montana State University, founded over 100 years prior in Bozeman, Montana. "Eastern" as her alumni nicknamed their alma mater, was then renamed and now known under her current name of Montana State University Billings, or MSUB, retaining mascot Yellowjackets while the original MSU in Bozeman retains original mascot (Golden)Bobcats, or "Cats", as popularly known. (see Cat-Griz/Griz-Cat game, Brawl of the Wild.)
  • Bozeman – Bozangeles[927], The Bozone[928]
  • Butte
  • Cut Bank – Coldest Spot in the Nation[392]
  • Glendive – Good People Surrounded by Badlands[932]
  • Great Falls – The Electric City[933]
  • Helena – Queen City of the Rockies[934]
  • Kalispell – Hub of the Valley[935]
  • Libby – City of Eagles[936][937]
  • Missoula – The Garden City[938]


Nebraska


Nevada

New Hampshire


New Jersey

Nicknames of several New Jersey communities celebrate their status as Jersey Shore resorts.

Sleazeside[1,015]


New Mexico


New York

Chazy calls itself the world capital of the McIntosh apple.
Cooperstown, site of the Baseball Hall of Fame where this plaque honoring Ty Cobb is displayed, lays claim to the title "Birthplace of Baseball."
Lockport's nickname of "Lock City" refers to the several Erie canal locks located in the city.

A

B

C

D

Duluth – The Air-Conditioned City

E

F

G

H

I

J

K

L

M

N

The city of Niagara Falls, New York, gets both its name and its nickname of "Cataract City" from the famous set of waterfalls known as Niagara Falls.

O

P

Q

R

S

This 1907 postcard of Canfield Park and Saratoga Springs' nickname "the Spa City" both recall the era when the city's mineral springs and hotels made it a fashionable resort.

T

U

W

Y


North Carolina

Sanford Santrap


North Dakota


Ohio

Alliance, which is officially nicknamed the Carnation City, helped make the scarlet carnation the state flower of Ohio.
The sculpture Flyover in downtown Dayton, the "Birthplace of Aviation," tracks the path of the Wright Brothers' first powered aircraft flight.

A

B

C

D

F

G

H

I

K

L

M

N

O

P

R

S

T

  • Toledo
    • Frog Town[1,223]
    • Glass Capital of the World[1,223]
    • The Glass City[1,224]
    • The Solar Valley[citation needed]
    • The Mud
    • The TOL
    • The 419
    • T-Town
    • Holedo (some refer due to the prostition issues in the city)
    • The Great Black Swamp
    • Port
  • Troy
    • Berry-land

U

V

W

X

Y

Z


Oklahoma


Oregon


Pennsylvania

A sign proclaiming Scranton as "The Electric City" overlooks Courthouse Square. The city got its moniker for being the site of the nation's first electric-powered streetcars.