Arizona December 14, 2015
10 Reasons Why Arizona Is The Most Underrated State In The US
When most Americans talk about Arizona, the key words that pop up tend to be “dirt,” “hot,” “sun,” and maybe something related to Sheriff Joe, all of which makes the state seem like a complete drag. That’s definitely not true, so here’s a look at ten of the lesser appreciated aspects of Arizona.
1. Arizona has a long history of contribution to space study and exploration.
We've had a hand in everything from the official sighting of Pluto to providing landing training grounds to Mars exploration.
2. Cactus League spring training happens here.
Baseball fans! Like knowing that your team is all set at the start of another season? You can thank our warm and sunny spring training weather for that.
3. Lettuce production is key.
Enjoy eating a tasty salad mid-winter? The main ingredient, lettuce, is Arizona's largest crop and Yuma and the surrounding area produces about 90% of the leafy greens each winter for the country.
4. A burgeoning food scene.
Sure, you'll still find a ridiculous number of chains strewn across cities and towns but there's still plenty of independently-owned restaurants and food trucks that will give you a mouth watering meal.
5. Craft beers are amazing and award-winning.
I don't drink but I rely on friends and family who do to let me know that Arizona breweries make some tasty drinks that will satisfy connoisseurs. Plus, a number of them, like Four Peaks Brewery, have won awards and other recognitions.
6. Arizona is also more than just dirt.
People are regularly surprised we have mountains, forests, wetlands, and—gasp—snow!
7. The landscapes, duh.
Arizona is beautiful. There's not much else to say there without trying to become the state's next bard.
8. A large majority of that land is also protected.
Enjoy those ode-worthy landscapes? We have 22 national parks plus 30 state parks and so much open space. Hopefully it stays that way.
9. Low cost of living.
While the actual cost will vary depending on where in the state you live, in general, Arizonans enjoy a lower cost of living than plenty of other Americans.
10. We have culture—it just looks a little different.
Ugh, one of the complaints I often hear is that Arizona has no culture. We do! It's just different from whatever uppity place those people come from. Historically, the state's culture comes from its Indigenous residents plus the Mexicans and Americans who migrated here from other areas. Mix those traditionally Western cultures with food, arts, sports, and other more “modern” signs of American culture and you get Arizona.
What are some other reasons you think Arizona is unjustly underrated by the rest of the country?