Tipsy Towns: Where Are America’s Drunkest Cities?

Which cities are most likely to break out the bubbly this New Year's Eve?

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Christmas is over, weary travelers are back home after family visits, and everyone is making plans for this weekend’s conveniently timed New Year’s Eve. So as America’s cities gear up for arguably the biggest party night of the holiday season, which destinations are likely to pop a little more champagne to ring in 2012?

According to The Daily Beast’s annual data-crunching, it seems that residents in two Massachusetts cities may be among the most generous drinkers. Boston and Springfield topped their “America’s Drunkest Cities of 2011” list, which averaged statistics on binge drinking, drinks consumed per month and population data culled from market research firm Experian Simmons and Center for Disease Prevention and Control surveys.

Beantown nabbed the top slot with 15.5 average monthly drinks consumed per person and 20.1% of the population listed as being binge drinkers (the CDC defines binge drinking as when 5 drinks or more are consumed in 2 hours by men and 4 drinks or more consumed in 2 hours by women). Springfield followed closely behind, with 14.6 average monthly drinks consumed per person and 19.5% of the population listed as binge drinkers. Milwaukee, Wisconsin arrived at number 3 (it topped the same list last year), and notable college towns like Austin (7) and San Diego (9) helped round out the top ten.

Curiously, two of the largest, and presumably partygoing cities, New York and Los Angeles, didn’t appear on the list. Even Las Vegas checks in midway at number 14, below that of fellow Nevada city, Reno, at number 4. So the top ten cities, as The Beast writes, may well be those where “every season is drinking season.”

Or maybe not. For Bostonians who aren’t pleased with the “drunkest” city labeling, take heart: earlier this year NewsFeed noted that Boston seemed to be the least drunk metro area, according to Men’s Health research.

Below are the The Daily Beast’s top ten. Click here for the full list.

1. Boston, Massachusetts
2. Springfield, Massachusetts
3. Milwaukee, Wisconsin
4. Reno, Nevada
5. San Antonio
6. Chicago, Illinois
7. Austin, Texas
8. St. Louis
9. San Diego, California
10. Tuscon, Arizona

— by Erik Hayden

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