All 50 State Nicknames, Debated and Ranked

Two writers yell at each other, for a good cause and a good friend.

Luke Trayser
May 30 · 21 min read
Image courtesy of Rhonda Kokot.

Rhonda Kokot, Managing Partner at Simple Truth, is diagnosed with Acute Myeloid Leukemia, a very aggressive blood cancer. Thanks to a stem cell treatment and the fact that she’s a badass, she beats the pants off it.

Rhonda runs a half marathon in Disney World. Three years later, she sets an official goal: run a half marathon in all 50 states and raise $100,000 for cancer research.

Jason Kronewitter and I rank NFL team logos on Medium. The solid elevator pitch (“these copywriters know nothing about design, so here are their bad design opinions”) led to a good reception. It didn’t go viral, but it definitely caught the sniffles.

Jason and I are back for another list: a ranking of all 50 official state nicknames. Why? Because of what’s about to happen.

Rhonda will run her 50th half marathon in Jackson Hole, Wyoming. As of this writing, she has raised over $91,000 for various cancer charities, including the Gateway for Cancer Research. If you want to know more, check out her 50–100 Challenge Facebook page.

Way to go, Rhonda. You’re amazing and we love you. Jason and I will now honor you by being total scrubs with trash opinions.


Note: The final rankings are at the end. Enjoy the interminable scrolling.

Alabama

CAMELLIA STATE / HEART OF DIXIE / YELLOWHAMMER STATE

Luke: [sends text that says “Alabama”]

Jason: We’re doing this via text??

Luke: What would you prefer?

Jason: Slack.

Luke: K.

Luke [sends slack that says “Alabama”]

Jason: I love that the first one out of the gate is one of the worst.

Luke: One of?

Jason: Shh, spoilers.

Luke: First in the alphabet and dead last in everything else.

Jason: I don’t know which of these garbage slogans to comment on first. Honestly, which one are we choosing for them?

Luke: Our source has 3 official nicknames for them. They’re the only state with multiple.

Jason: They all hurt me on a cellular level. What’s a camellia?

Luke: A flower. Thanks, Google.

Jason: An Asian flower? In Alabama?

Luke: All 3 nicknames are bad, and the fact that they can’t pick one makes all of them worse. Roll Tide.

Jason: How is the nickname not Roll Tide?

Luke: Tide State.

Jason: Tide Pods State.

Luke: …

Jason: Nailed it.

Alaska

THE LAST FRONTIER

Jason: Ooooh, space.

Luke: This is good. Makes me want to overestimate my exploration ability and die alone.

Jason: I don’t have a lot of bad things to say about this one.

Luke: This is my highest ranked nickname that doesn’t end with the word State.

Jason: It’s a little pretentious.

Luke: It’s not pretentious if you can pull it off.

Jason: It’s one of my favorites and not because it makes me think of William Shatner. Well, maybe a little.

Luke: Pop quiz: How old is Shatner? No Googling. I say 85.

Jason: No way. 77 at the most. His hairpiece is 26 tho.

Luke. WILLIAM SHATNER IS 88 YEARS OLD. What in tarnation.

Jason: Impressive. Good on you, Billy.

Arizona

GRAND CANYON STATE

Luke: You know that friend who is amazing at one thing and doesn’t stop reminding you?

Jason: lol

Jason: Full disclosure, I thought the Grand Canyon was in Nevada.

Luke: LOL WHAT. No you did not.

Jason: If you held a gun to my head, I would have said I didn’t know.

Luke: Heavens to Betsy.

Editor: Luke is not 90 years old despite all the weird phrases he keeps using.

Arkansas

NATURAL STATE

Luke: YAWN. Natural State is the new counting sheep.

Jason: What if we put Ar at the beginning of kansas and called ourselves that?

Luke: I think we got it! Great meeting, everybody.

Jason: And what does Natural State even mean? Naked?

Luke: Drug and alcohol free. Unlike those bums in Kansas.

California

GOLDEN STATE

Jason: This is one of the handful I knew before we started this.

Luke: And?

Jason: Simple. Straightforward. I mean, I don’t know what it means, but that’s beside the point.

Luke: Pretty sure it’s a gold rush nod first and foremost. This nickname is completely full of itself. Quintessential California.

Jason: Oh this one is bad but Last Frontier is fine?

Luke: Correct.

Jason: I thought the gold was about the sun.

Luke: And money. It’s a great tagline. I hate it.

Colorado

CENTENNIAL STATE

Jason: It’s the 100th state?

Luke: Yes.

Jason: Man, this is going to take forever! That’s twice as many as I was told.

Luke: I’m deleting this part of the chat.

Editor: He didn’t.

Luke: It’s a real bummer Colorado got statehood in 1876. So much opportunity here.

Jason: There is?

Luke: Elway State.

Jason: Much better. You’d think they’d focus on the Rocky Mountains, but what do I know.

Luke: Mile High State is an alt. That should be official.

Jason: Truth.

Connecticut

CONSTITUTION STATE

Luke: Quite the flex.

Jason: This project is really putting a spotlight on my lack of general history and geography knowledge.

Luke: Yeah, it’s concerning.

Jason: So the constitution was written in Connecticut? Is that why it has so many letters?

Luke: You’d be such a sick history teacher. I’d guess the constitution was written in Philly. But according to my research, the first constitution of Connecticut inspired many of the ideas in the U.S. constitution. Mostly “hooray for white male land owners.”

Jason: UGH. This slogan is tanking quickly.

Luke: Agree. An alt for them is Nutmeg State, which is an incredible basketball power move. Switch it to that.

Jason: Also, Arsenal of the Nation. Real close to Arse of the Nation and that tracks for me.

Delaware

FIRST STATE

Luke: Love it so much.

Jason: FLEX.

Luke: Literally no one has ever been there, but they’re all “Whatevs, we were first.”

Jason: They’re the annoying internet commenter of the USA. I’ll stan for that.

Luke: LOL. Delaware was the first YouTube commenter in history.

Florida

SUNSHINE STATE

Jason: How can a state so shitty have such a perfect slogan?

Luke: Yes, it fits. It’s a great nickname. Note to all states: If your nickname has alliteration, Jason will love you.

Jason: Forget your Golden State. We’ve got Sunshine. And meth!

Jason: Orange State is a great alt, too. Well done, Florida. A phrase I assume has never been uttered ever.

Luke: They were due.

Georgia

PEACH STATE

Luke: First of all, kudos for not green lighting the alt, Empire State of the South. New York would have declared war.

Jason: lol

Jason: Butt State

Luke: Please send that to the top of Georgia’s government write now. Email with only “Butt State” as the subject line and no other text. They’ll know what it means.

Jason: This is up there with Sunshine and Golden.

Luke: Wait you love this one?

Jason: I don’t think I’ve ever eaten a peach.

Luke: WAIT WHAT? Have you had a pear yet?

Jason: Nope. I don’t eat weird P fruits.

Luke: GAHHHHHHHHH I CANNOT WITH YOU.

Jason: Is a plum a fruit? Cuz I haven’t eaten that yet, either.

Luke: Yes! All three are amazing!

Luke: What are you doing with your life?

Jason: Eating apples and bananas like an adult.

Luke: Peach State is a middle of the pack nickname. Fight me.

Jason: Wow. Maybe it just seems mysterious to me.

Luke: lol

Luke: “wtf is a peach” -jason

Jason: Georgia. It’s peachy. Boom. Pay me.

Hawaii

ALOHA STATE

Jason: Everyone ever: “Aloha means hello and goodbye!”

Luke: Yayyyyy you know a state fact.

Jason: NO SHIT, CAROL! WE KNOW! This is middle of the road for me.

Luke: Easy top 10 nickname for me.

Jason: No effort.

Luke: It’s perfect. No changes.

Jason: Perfectly average. Try harder, Hawaii. Hang Loose State?

Luke: NO. Stop it. They kept it simple and kept it them. I love it.

Jason: OMG THEY HAVE RAINBOW STATE AS AN ALT

Luke: That’s great, too.

Jason: You’ve got James Harden on the bench and you’re starting Luke. Fail.

Luke: You’re wrong about this. Last chance to reverse course.

Jason: RAINBOW STATE or nothing. Take all your vowels and gtfo.

Idaho

GEM STATE

Jason: You spelled potato wrong.

Luke: Potato State is wonderful.

Jason: This is a huge miss.

Luke: I like the brevity of it. 9 characters is hard to beat, and gems are pretty. This concludes the things I like about this.

Jason: Gems are just sparkly rocks. Potatoes are delicious.

Luke: I’d approve a change to Potato State.

Jason: You’re on a deserted island and you can have a potato or a gem. Who takes the gem? Luke does.

Luke: You forgot a gift for your wife and you can have a potato or a gem. Who gives the potato? Jason does.

Jason: And she loves me for it. Cuz it’s a baked potato.

Luke: With what on it.

Jason: Butter, sour cream, chives.

Luke: Sour cream is bad.

Jason: Bad for you, yes. Bad, no.

Luke: It’s bad and I hate it.

Jason: I swear if you mention sweet potatoes, I’m setting this place on fire.

Luke: ThEy’Re A sUpErFoOd

Jason: They taste like wet feet. Or whatever a pear tastes like.

Illinois

PRAIRIE STATE

Luke: NOOOOOOOOO. IT WAS RIGHT THERE.

Jason: It’s Land of Lincoln.

Luke: Yes.

Jason: I will accept zero other answers.

Luke: Correct.

Jason: Should our nickname be after one of the greatest presidents or a field?

Luke: lol

Jason: Bottom of the heap. Way to represent, IL.

Luke: At least our trash tier license plates say Land of Lincoln. So proud to live here.

Indiana

CROSSROADS OF AMERICA

Luke: Air ball.

Jason: Much like their neighbor to the (checks map) west, they also had a better slogan: Hoosier State.

Luke: I feel like you really did check a map there.

Jason: Crossroads of America was created before people lived past 30. Indianans: “EVERYONE will pass through here on their way west. We’re the crossroads.” Then smallpox was cured and cars happened and they were screwed.

Luke: Formula for a terrible nickname: When a state goes “I’m this thing” and everyone else instantly says “You’re definitely not.”

Jason: Could have been Corn State, too. Come on, Indiana. Get it together.

Jason: Wait, I’m thinking of Nebraska.

Luke: Yes you are. Hoosier State is approved.

Iowa

HAWKEYE STATE

Jason: They forgot they had to do a slogan and thought of something at the last second.

Luke: OH NO OH NO UHHHH WHAT BIRDS DO WE HAVE

Jason: Google “hawkeye” and it’s just Jeremy Renner for 6 pages. Worst Avenger?

Luke: Yes. Yes he is. Apparently Hawkeye State is a tribute to Chief Black Hawk.

Jason: From the Internet: Two Iowa promoters from Burlington are believed to have popularized the name.

Jason: OOH, dueling Internet facts!

Luke: Who’s right? Someone scream at us in the comments.

Jason: Also, the Iowa Hawkeye? His name is Herky the Hawk. I’m speechless.

Luke: Herky State. Print it.

Kansas

SUNFLOWER STATE

Jason: I think I have to recuse myself for Kansas.

Luke: Nado State.

Jason: Jayhawk State is better. Bleeding Kansas is a bit dark.

Luke: I love the Wheat State alt, that’d be #1 overall. So exciting. But Sunflower State is fine. Whatever.

Kentucky

BLUEGRASS STATE

Luke: Yes. Way to go, Kentucky.

Jason: Another one I knew. It’s great. Maybe the greatest.

Luke: Ok, let’s not go crazy. If you put this #1 overall, you’re on probation.

Jason: It’s up there is all I’m saying. And Kentucky has no alts. They knew they had a winner and just dropped the quill.

Louisiana

PELICAN STATE

Luke: Pelicans are badass.

Jason: No. Pelicans are dumb af.

Luke: HOW DARE YOU. brb looking up pelican facts.

Jason: They kill themselves diving into the water.

Luke: Prove it.

Luke: Pelican facts.

Jason: I’ve…I’ve got nothing. I apologize, pelicans.

Luke: Its eyesight is so good, it can see fish beneath the surface from 60 feet up.

Jason: Majestic creatures.

Luke: I love them so much.

Luke: Pelican bills haven’t changed in 30 million years. They are perfect.

Jason: I SAID I’M TEAM PELICAN. [whispers] should be Crawfish State

Maine

PINE TREE STATE

Luke: “What’s a thing every state also has?”

Jason: LOL

Jason: Maine did this without ever leaving the state.

Jason: “I bet no one else has pine trees.”

Luke: “OH WAY TO GO, NATHANIEL. TURNS OUT EVERYONE HAS PINE TREES.”

Jason: Nathaniel. Perfect.

Maryland

OLD LINE STATE

Luke: Bad.

Jason: Wow. This is a zero effort slogan.

Luke: Name came from George Washington, who obviously sucked at naming things.

Jason: Vacationland is so much better.

Luke: That’s Maine.

Jason: What are we talking about?

Luke: Maryland.

Jason: Cockade State! What an alt.

Luke: I’m scared to Google.

Jason: Every one of these alts is better. Monumental State. Not being Terrapin State is a huge L.

Luke: Your college sports bias is showing.

Jason: Yes. But it’s a cool name.

Massachusetts

BAY STATE

Luke: I hate it.

Jason: Yikes. Taxachusetts is better.

Luke: What a snoozefest. Tea State or nothing.

Jason: Tea State is much better.

Luke: Where were we when these fools were nicknaming?

Jason: It’s worse than I could have imagined.

Michigan

GREAT LAKES STATE

Jason: Uh oh. This is gonna test my geography knowledge again.

Luke: lol

Luke: Name all five. Go. No Googling.

Jason: Huron, Ontario, Michigan, Superior, Erie.

Luke: Oh dang.

Jason: Thank you, Chicago streets.

Jason: But does Michigan touch more than one lake?

Luke: Yes, multiple. Not sure which. Michigan, Superior, Ontario?

Jason: Mitten State is…

Jason: …Superior.

Luke: I was gonna say Mitten State!

Jason: It’s so great. “Where you from?” “Mitten State.” Awwww. Mittens are hugs for fingers.

Jason: I’ve had sugar this morning. Sorry.

Minnesota

NORTH STAR STATE

Jason: This is Land of 10,000 Lakes and I will not be hearing any counter arguments. Thanks for attending my TED Talk.

Luke: North Star State is easily a top 10 nickname, get out of here.

Jason: THEY HAVE 10,000 LAKES. Everyone knows this. BECAUSE IT’S THEIR SLOGAN.

Luke: Fun fact: Wisconsin has more lakes than Minnesota. They just don’t brag about it.

Jason: I’m not sure you know what fun means.

Luke: I think I just rekt your argument and you’re sad. North Star State is great.

Jason: Weren’t the Stars an NHL team? Now they have the Wild?

Luke: Yes, Minnesota North Stars. They moved to Dallas. New franchise came to Minnesota eventually.

Jason: The defense rests on this terrible slogan. The star left the slogan for Texas. The REAL star state.

Jason: Good teaser.

Luke: Calm down, you two.

Mississippi

MAGNOLIA STATE

Luke: Nearly in my top 10 and totally influenced by the magnolia tree in my front yard. It’s beautiful and smells lovely.

Jason: I have no beef with Magnolia State. It’s quaint. Also a weird Tom Cruise movie?

Luke: The weirdest. As I recall, literally everyone was in that.

Jason: Says a guy who hasn’t seen Eyes Wide Shut.

Luke: Eyes Wide Shut’s title made no sense so I boycotted.

Jason: I think I’m thinking of Vanilla Sky, Actually.

Luke: That movie SUUUUUUUUUUCKS.

Jason: I don’t know why I capitalized actually. It’s not the sequel to Love, Actually. And before you even start, we don’t have time to argue about that movie. Cease and desist.

Luke: THAT CUE CARD SCENE IS AN ABSOLUTE DISASTER.

Missouri

SHOW ME STATE

Jason: We made it!

Luke: You’ll be pleased to know I have this #47 out of 50. It is not good.

Jason: Full disclosure, when I arrived at the best Journalism School in the country (University of Missouri), I had no idea this was the state slogan. I did not love it at first. But it grew on me.

Luke: Why.

Jason: I was afraid you were going to ask that. Has a down home feel to it.

Luke: Here’s another question. What does “show me” mean here? Because it sure sounds like “I’m a nincompoop and need to be taught how to do everything ever.”

Jason: I’m so glad you asked. This phrase has several origins. One is popularly ascribed to a speech by Congressman Willard Vandiver in 1899, who declared that “I come from a state that raises corn and cotton, cockleburs and Democrats, and frothy eloquence neither convinces nor satisfies me. I’m from Missouri, and you have got to show me.” That quote has both cockleburs and frothy in it. Which is hard to pull off. Also, Frothy Eloquence is my rap name.

Luke: So I take it that’s your favorite of the “several origins,” huh?

Jason: Rare situation where the alts are all worse. Let’s MU-ve on.

Luke: Gateway State is strong. I’d do that. Or Best Fans In Baseball State.

Jason: Ugh.

Montana

TREASURE STATE

Jason: What is this all about?

Luke: The rivalry between Idaho and Montana continues. Gem State vs Treasure State. Who you got?

Jason: Big Sky Country is the more well known one because it’s 100% better.

Luke: Montana is a state, not a country. Nickname invalid. Big Sky State is actually better, too.

Jason: For sure. What about There’s Only 8 Of Us State?

Luke: Gem State is better than Treasure State btw.

Jason: Both are terrible.

Luke: And Potato State is better than them all.

Jason: YES. Why do we always do this around lunch? I NEED POTATOES STAT.

Nebraska

CORNHUSKER STATE

Jason: This is top 5.

Luke: If you meant top 20, I agree.

Jason: I can’t wait to see your top 5. I’m gonna hate them so much.

Luke: Likewise, obviously.

Jason: Just peaches and gems. Gross.

Jason: Cornhusker sounds both mildly sexual and mildly violent. Hard to pull off.

Luke: I’m not supposed to let bias leak into my rankings, but I can’t help it here. I’ve driven through Nebraska plenty of times to get to the Rockies. GO AWAY, CORN.

Jason: We’re supposed to be unbiased? Who added that terrible rule?

Luke: Not you, apparently. Your college sports leanings are the worst.

Jason: This is top 5 for me even though I despise Nebraska football. Corn good. Corn with husks bad. Therefore, cornhuskers. The math checks out.

Luke: It’s supposed to be “Oh this nickname is good. Top 5,” and not “Oh I recognize this, I love football, top 5.”

Jason: GEMS. We got lots left, so let’s agree that you’re wrong and move on.

Luke: I have Cornhusker ranked higher than Gem, FYI. Your takes remain brutal.

Jason: Rubber/Glue.

Nevada

SILVER STATE

Luke: Hearty LOL at this one.

Luke: California: “We’re Golden State.” Nevada: “WE CALL SILVER.” Just perfect.

Jason: Can this be the worst?

Luke: Ah yes. The great silver rush everyone remembers. Who could possibly forget? Way back in 18dickety7.

Jason: There’s silver in them thar hills! We should have a whole category called Zero Effort.

Luke: Nevada is the kid who wouldn’t stop looking over your shoulder during the test.

New Hampshire

GRANITE STATE

Jason: Not even a cool rock. Granite.

Luke: New Hampshire’s kitchens are amazing.

Jason: I hate that I liked that joke. Are we gonna run out of granite? Is it finite?

Luke: Stop looking for nicknames in quarries, folks. It does not work.

Jason: We’ve reached the geology section of this discussion.

Luke: At least Gem State and Treasure State inspire non-literal interpretations. New Hampshire is like “Nope it’s just granite here.”

Jason: I guess “We have a lot of rocks” is not a great way to spitball slogan ideas.

Luke: It’s dumb and I’ve never seen anything worse in my life.

Luke: #38 overall.

New Jersey

GARDEN STATE

Luke: That movie is bad, change my mind.

Jason: I’m not a garden fan.

Luke: Like, all gardens?

Jason: Madison Square can get bent. I’m a briar patch kind of guy.

Luke: I have a garden with herbs and veggies, and I just want to say all bunnies need to be fired into space.

Jason: Wait, briar patches are a Wheaton thing? Google says so.

Luke: All of our briar patches were replaced by churches. Google needs an update.

Jason: A joke just for Wheatonites. So specific.

New Mexico

THE LAND OF ENCHANTMENT

Luke: Do less acid, New Mexico.

Jason: Oooooh. Lovely.

Luke: Hang on. You like this one?

Jason: Who doesn’t like enchantment?

Luke: If you can only experience it via heat stroke, me.

Jason: This is so different than the other garbage we’ve seen so far.

Luke: Look, there is obviously a formula here that states need to stick to. You don’t have “The” in the nickname. You end with the word “State.” Going against that is a huge gamble, and you’d better nail it. This did not.

Jason: What does your state have? Pelicans. Pfft. Gems. lol. Granite. gtfo. We’ve got ENCHANTMENT!

Luke: When we differ, we really differ. I can’t believe you like this.

Jason: I believe you don’t. You’re a 100 year old trapped in a near 40 year old body. GET OFF MY LAWN, NEW MEXICO.

Luke: I can’t believe I just got hit with “near 40.”

New York

EMPIRE STATE

Luke: Nailed it. Nailed it so hard.

Jason: Take it easy. But it is hard to argue. Pretty great. Don’t tell NY though, they’ve already got a superiority complex.

Luke: Ok, I’ll fudge my numbers.

Jason: After my first trip there recently, they may actually deserve that superiority complex.

North Carolina

TAR HEEL STATE

Luke: What’s a tar heel again?

Jason: A Michael Jeffrey Jordan.

Luke: I’d green light Jordan State.

Jason: Tar heel sounds like it might be not culturally appropriate, but it’s just boring. Originated from North Carolina’s long history as a producer of naval stores — tar, pitch, rosin, and zzzzzzzzzzzz.

Luke: YAWN. (but for real I like Tar Heel State)

North Dakota

PEACE GARDEN STATE

Jason: Another garden?

Luke: If i did no research on this, I would absolutely hate it. Instead, I just kind of hate it. The Peace Garden looks gorgeous and it sits right on the US/Canada border. Nice concept, nice execution. Bad nickname. Sounds like they’re ripping off New Jersey.

Jason: New Jersey: 3rd into the union. North Dakota: 39th. They 100% slapped Peace in front of Garden State. Welcome to Team Zero Effort!

Ohio

BUCKEYE STATE

Jason: It’s a nut. As my dad tells me all the damn time.

Luke: I thought it was a tree. Nut State is strong btw.

Jason: It is not.

Luke: So strong.

Jason: It’s starting to occur to me that state colleges have no originality.

Luke: Or they know what the people want. I’m cool with Buckeye State. I think it’s good. The school that claimed it is insufferable, but the nickname rolls off the tongue nicely.

Jason: My dad went there, sir.

Luke: Bad trees can produce good nuts.

Jason: Gross.

Luke: GOOD NUTS.

Jason: has left the conversation

Oklahoma

SOONER STATE

Luke: Yes, yes, why eee ess. As I understand it, there was basically a starter’s pistol that signaled people could sprint into Oklahoma and claim land. I’m probably way off, but I refuse to check.

Luke: This is #3 overall. I love it so much.

Jason: GET OUTTA HERE. Your criteria is bonkers.

Luke: I’m sorry the football team hurt you, but you need to look past it and into history. It’s spot on.

Jason: I dont care about the football team one iota. This is just a bad slogan.

Luke: I regret this entire exercise.

Jason: You and me both, buddy.

Oregon

BEAVER STATE

Luke: nsfw

Jason: Dam, that’s another bad one.

Luke: LOL UP TOP.

Jason: There aren’t enough animals represented in this list, so I’m all for this one. Best animal?

Luke: Like, on earth? Because otter.

Jason: Nickname, you giant-headed buffoon.

Luke: Wait. Otters are basically beavers.

Luke: omg I love Oregon’s nickname now.

Jason: Oh how fast you quit on pelicans. Also, you know what the best animal is.

Luke: QUOKKA!

Pennsylvania

KEYSTONE STATE

Jason: Love it.

Luke: Oh thank the heavens above. This thing is just overflowing with history. It’s so perfect and wonderful and it should never be changed.

Jason: Top 4.

Luke: Top 1. I can’t get enough.

Jason: Potato State is still better.

Luke: You’re not wrong.

Rhode Island

OCEAN STATE

Luke: LOL

Jason: This is bad.

Luke: What are you doing, you tiny idiot.

Jason: RI pulling a Brick Tamland and just naming things that it sees.

Luke: “I hate that we’re small. What’s something that’s very big?” looks east, eyes go wide

South Carolina

PALMETTO STATE

Jason: This I weirdly enjoy.

Luke: I looked up what a palmetto was two days ago and I already forgot. I’ll say a tree. Or a boring rock.

Jason: Tree. Also a risky movie?

Jason: Sorry. Risqué.

Luke: If that’s a joke, it wooshed me.

Jason: I can almost picture the poster.

Jason: Found it.

Luke: OH THEY GONNA DO IT.

Jason: In a town this bad it’s no use being good. WE HAVE A SLOGAN WINNER!

South Dakota

MOUNT RUSHMORE STATE

Luke: Obvious call and terribly clunky as a nickname.

Jason: This one requires some digging. Found out they changed their slogan when they built the tourist attraction. BOO!!

Luke: Some would call it a monument. It’s not Space Mountain.

Jason: It doesn’t attract tourists?? Weird. Have you seen it?

Luke: Yes, it big.

Jason: Follow up: Have you seen the Crazy Horse?

Luke: Negative.

Jason: YOU WERE RIGHT THERE! Great monument. Weak-ass slogan. Final answer.

Luke: Concur.

Tennessee

VOLUNTEER STATE

Luke: Strong. Thanks, volunteers.

Jason: It’s fine. Middle of the road.

Luke: The Battle of New Orleans really needed cell phones btw.

Luke: War of 1812 [ends] Battle of New Orleans: [begins]

Jason: lol

Luke: Maybe send a text next time, Old Hickory.

Texas

LONE STAR STATE

Jason: HERE. WE. GO.

Luke: lol you’re so predictable.

Jason: Now this is a star I can get behind. And I don’t even like Texas that much.

Luke: As I recall, you made out with the Texans logo in our NFL rundown.

Jason: And the Cowboys.

Luke: What is your deal with this star?

Jason: It just feels…best.

Luke: It’s outstanding and also needs to get over itself.

Jason: Easy top 5. LONE STAR. Fun to type and say. It’s badass.

Luke: North Star State > Lone Star State

Jason: We’re no longer on speaking terms. AGAIN, the North Star ran away to Dallas. Poignant af.

Luke: Pretty sure the North Star is still up there.

Jason: Pics or it didn’t happen.

Utah

BEEHIVE STATE

Jason: HAHAHA. Utah has beehives?

Luke: Stealing a page from the Maine playbook.

Jason: This is too fun for Utah.

Luke: Yeah beehives are a gas.

Jason: THEY PROTECT THE PLANET!

Luke: Reminder that people from Utah are called Utahns, which is the worst word I’ve ever seen.

Vermont

GREEN MOUNTAIN STATE

Jason: No.

Luke: West Virginia vs Vermont is a gauntlet.

Jason: Spoiler: WV and VT sat next to each other on test day.

Luke: VT: Mountain State! WV: [lawsuit] VT: Oh dammit, quick what’s a good adjective.

Jason: GREEN!

Luke: GOOD WORK, JENKINS.

Virginia

OLD DOMINION

Jason: THIS. Love it.

Luke: Oh come on.

Jason: #6.

Luke: OH COME ON.

Jason: Soon to be #5 after a late change!

Luke: I barf.

Jason: You hate the ones that don’t have “State.” Heaven forbid we break the mold.

Luke: England: “Thanks for being a total kiss-ass, Virginia. I deem thee Old Dominion.”

Jason: That joke is over my head.

Luke: Some dead king in England loved that Virginia was a total suck up, so he gave them the nickname.

Jason: Ah. That was boring and I’d like to go back to before you told me.

Luke: #46 overall. Suck ups suck. I know it’s staying in your top 5 because you’re stubborn, but I also know I ruined it for you. I’m happy and I no longer regret this exercise.

Jason: It’s moving up. You’ll see.

Washington

EVERGREEN STATE

Jason: Another tree! Weeeeeee!!!

Luke: This is way better than Maine, to be fair.

Jason: “We need a slogan that stands the test of time.” “You mean something…evergreen?” (carried off on the shoulders of his fellow slogan namers)

Jason: That’s either my best joke or my worst. Hard to tell at this point.

Luke: I think you’d call it your best and I’d call it your worst given how we’re trending.

Jason: Probably.

West Virginia

MOUNTAIN STATE

Luke: Why on earth is this #27? It’s not good. Hmmm.

Jason: 85% of these were done day-of, I’m convinced.

Luke: Yes. Remember assignment, panic, frantically glance all over.

Jason: Yup. 32 of 50 were opening a window and naming something you saw. “Look, a beaver!” Done. PUT IN THE EFFORT, WEST VIRGINIA. Look at your brother, Virginia.

Luke: Yeah, look at the suck up. Be more like him.

Luke: The important question: Better or worse than Vermont?

Jason: Somehow it’s better. Simplicity.

Luke: Agree.

Wisconsin

BADGER STATE

Luke: Are badgers real? I’ve never seen one.

Jason: Badger > Beaver/Hawkeye/Beehive. Pelican > Badger. Potato > All.

Luke: I think I’m cool with all this math. I’m just so tired and I don’t want to fight anymore.

Jason: Badgers are real mean, I think. Like if you see one, RUN.

Luke: Run where? To Minnesota?

Jason: Yes, leave the state.

Wyoming

EQUALITY STATE

Luke: Sure! Equality is good.

Jason: Here is the controversy. I ranked this one based on Cowboy State.

Luke: Oh no.

Jason: Which, while I am PRO EQUALITY, is 2 million percent better.

Luke: That’s a lot.

Jason: I had Cowboy State at (checks math) #4. Now it plummets and I look like an ass who isn’t in favor of equality.

Luke: BAHAHAHA I love it.

Jason: It’s the perfect ending.


50. Indiana (crossroads of america)
49. Arkansas (natural)
48. Idaho (gem)
47. Alabama (no)
46. Rhode Island (ocean)
45. Massachusetts (bay)
44. Vermont (green mountain)
43. Maryland (old line)
42. Nevada (silver)
41. Montana (treasure)

40. North Dakota
39. Maine
38. West Virginia
37. Washington
36. Arizona
35. Ohio
34. Iowa
33. Connecticut
32. Colorado
31. South Dakota

30. New Jersey
29. Missouri
28. Kansas
27. New Hampshire
26. Nebraska
25. Michigan
24. Illinois
23. Tennessee
22. Oregon
21. Wisconsin

20. North Carolina
19. Oklahoma
18. Utah
17. Wyoming
16. Minnesota
15. Mississippi
14. Hawaii
13. Louisiana
12. Georgia
11. Florida

10. South Carolina (palmetto)
9. Delaware (FIRST!)
8. California (golden)
7. Alaska (the last frontier)
6. Virginia (old dominion)
5. Kentucky (bluegrass)
4. Texas (lone star)
3. Pennsylvania (keystone)
2. New York (empire)
1. New Mexico (the land of enchantment)


50. Alabama (too many to name, gtfo)
49. Indiana (crossroads of america)
48. Massachusetts (bay)
47. Missouri (show me)
46. Virginia (old dominion)
45. Rhode Island (ocean)
44. Nevada (silver)
43. Arkansas (natural)
42. Oregon (beaver)
41. Illinois (prairie)

40. Maine
39. New Mexico
38. New Hampshire
37. South Carolina
36. North Dakota
35. Maryland
34. Wisconsin
33. Utah
32. Vermont
31. Kansas

30. Colorado
29. New Jersey
28. South Dakota
27. West Virginia
26. Georgia
25. Louisiana
24. Iowa
23. Montana
22. Michigan
21. Wyoming

20. Idaho
19. Nebraska
18. Arizona
17. California
16. Connecticut
15. Washington
14. Alaska
13. North Carolina
12. Ohio
11. Mississippi

10. Kentucky (bluegrass)
9. Texas (lone star)
8. Tennessee (volunteer)
7. Hawaii (aloha)
6. Minnesota (north star)
5. Florida (sunshine)
4. Delaware (FIRST!)
3. Oklahoma (sooner)
2. New York (empire)
1. Pennsylvania (keystone)


Coming as soon as Luke’s eyes stop bleeding from editing this behemoth.

Luke Trayser

Written by

ACD and copy guy at Ivor Andrew. Freelance copywriting mercenary. Not my real hair. Get in touch on Twitter or email ltrayser at gmail.