Do I really have to convince you that Utah is a great state? Probably not. But just in case you’d like some statistics to back you up when you talk to those snotty out-of-town cousins, I’ve found 12 reasons why Utahns should be proud of our state.
1) Utah is the Best State for Business
Forbes ranked Utah as its Best State for Business in 2014. The financial site listed Utah’s business-friendly climate, low-energy costs and economic expansion as reasons for putting our state first on the list.
2) Utah Has the Most Jurassic-Era Dinosaurs
Our state is home to the most dense collection of Jurassic-era dinosaur bones ever found. Paleontologists at the Cleveland-Lloyd Dinosaur Quarry in Vernal have already excavated over 12,000 bones and are still digging.
3) Utah is a Great State for Road Trips
We’ve already covered some of Utah’s best road trips; we certainly have plenty to choose from. WalletHub ranked Utah 6th in the nation for Best Road Trips, citing our “road conditions and safety” as 2nd in the nation. Not only do we have great things to see in Utah, we manage to get there (and back) safely. We also ranked 3rd in the country for “Most Scenic Byways.”
4) Utah is the Best Place to Become a Gaming Engineer
Princeton Review ranked the University of Utah’s Entertainment Arts and Engineering (EAE) graduate program 1st in the nation, and its undergraduate program 2nd in the nation in 2015. If you want to design video games for a living, this is the state in which to do it!
5) Utah Hosts the Largest Holi Festival in the U.S.
Our state might be well-known for its Mormon population, but the Washington Post recently noted that the Radha Krishna Temple in Spanish Fork hosts the largest Holi Festival in the entire country -- the Festival of Colors.
6) Utah is the Perfect State to Land a Trout
Live Outdoors ranked Utah’s Green River as one of the best spots in the country to land a large trout. Many of Utah’s fly fishers could probably tell you a number of great spots to land huge trout that haven’t made any national lists -- but then they’d have to kill you.
7) Utah Has Some of the Country’s Best Sunsets
National Geographic ranked Antelope Island the 2nd best place in the world for amazing sunsets. I imagine that the magazine’s globe-trotting photographers have seen some pretty amazing sunsets, so ranking Antelope Island 2nd is really saying something.
8) Utah is a Great Place for Independent Film
IndieWire ranks Sundance as the 2nd best independent film festival in the world -- right behind Festival de Cannes, in France.
9) Utah is a Great Place for Iconic Film
National Geographic ranked Monument Valley, UT as the third best “Film Footsteps” spot in the entire world -- right behind New York City (number 1) and Hollywood (number 2). Utah’s Monument Valley beat out other amazing cities such as Rome, Mumbai, Paris and London.
10) Utah Has Plenty of Jobs
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ June 2015 report, Utah ranks third in the nation for low unemployment rates. At 3.5 percent, we’re right behind North Dakota (3.1 percent) and Nebraska (2.6 percent).
11) Utah is THE Place to Ski
We couldn’t possibly leave out skiing on this list -- our fresh powder and gorgeous resorts pretty much land our state on every list of “Best Skiing” out there. Forbes ranked Snowbird #2 on their list of “Top 10 Ski Resorts for 2014.” Alta was #3 on the list, and Solitude ranked #10. Three resorts on a list of only 10 in the entire country!
12) Utah Has the Best Mountain Biking
Is it really any surprise that Utah ranks at or near the top of almost every list of “Best” mountain biking places in the world? More than 100,000 mountain bikers visit Moab every year. In addition to our world-famous mountain biking venue, Utah has hundreds of biking trails around the state.