Party in the Heartland: Ohio University Named Nation’s Top Party School

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The Ohio University campus

Who knew the Appalachian foothills were home to the country’s best college parties?

In a study sure to be lauded by students and denounced by administrators, Ohio University, located in small-town Athens, Ohio, has taken top honors as the top party school in a Princeton Review survey. Nestled in the forests of southeastern Ohio, the public university boasts just over 20,000 students and is known to throw a raging, citywide Halloween bash. Okay, but is it really the best?

After all, Ohio University isn’t typically thought of in the same tier as other major state schools when it comes to partying. Wisconsin, Arizona State, Colorado, and even OU’s in-state doppelganger Ohio State may surge to the top of one’s mind, but perhaps they’re too obvious choices.

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In fact, OU has been steadily climbing the party ranks in Princeton Review’s survey. Two years ago, the school claimed the #5 ranking, shooting to second place last year, and finally being crowned in the top spot this year. In this year’s rankings, Ohio wrenched the title from the University of Georgia, who dropped to #2. A wide swath of the nation was represented in the top 5 alone, which also included Mississippi, Iowa, and University of California-Santa Barbara.

The Princeton Review survey collected surveys from 122,000 students in creating 61 different ranked lists. But it’s hardly a surprise that the party schools list makes the most waves. Some (mostly square college administrators) condemn the survey as unscientific. NewsFeed is just curious: what makes the best party?

Of course, the party kings at Ohio University now have to live up to their reputation. They’ll probably toast the ranking with a beer – or ten.

Nick Carbone is a reporter at TIME. Find him on Twitter at @nickcarbone. You can also continue the discussion on TIME’s Facebook page and on Twitter at @TIME.

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