“Out of many, one” is a slogan that shows unity among states to form the USA. But each state also has its own unique flair as well. Each of these photos perfectly represents the culture of every state.
This jerry-rigged “speedboat” is powered by a car battery and has a lawn chair with a picture of Big Al the elephant, the Alabama Crimson Tide mascot on it. Northerners may raise their eyebrows at this bootlegged setup, but Alabama natives love this kind of creativity and state pride.
Idaho natives are honest about their state. When asked about their attractions, even the government’s tourist board shrugged. The top attraction in Idaho is Yellowstone National Park, which is mostly actually in Wyoming, with some of it spreading into Idaho. They do produce one-third of the USA’s potatoes, so it could be good to visit and have some of their famous mashed Idaho potatoes.
Alaskan traffic jams are not exactly typical. These two grizzlies almost look like they are embracing like they have not seen each other in a while, but the truth is, they are fighting with all their might. The growls and snarls translate vaguely to, “Highway 1 is MY territory!” While some tourists take pictures, there are others who are unimpressed and decide to sit by the water. Those unfazed people are the Alaska natives, who are used to this type of roadblock.
Instead of the friendly Smokey Bear reminding us that only we can prevent forest fires, Arizona prefers a blunter, funnier version of the same public service announcement, as you can see in this photo. You might see an Arizona native at the Grand Canyon, with a bola tie, the official neckwear of the state, adorned with a Turquoise gemstone, the official gemstone of the state. The beautiful desert landscape of the state is also home to almost 30 Native American tribes, who have reservations spread throughout.
Surfs up?! On the 405 highway? That’s California for you. Where else would a surfboard come loose from one (likely hybrid or electric) car and hit another fuel-efficient vehicle right on the windshield? Californians spend so much time on the beach and in traffic on the highway, that this kind of thing happens more than you’d think. The only way this could become more Californian is if the drivers involved in the accident are Hollywood celebrities, and both are drinking fresh-pressed green juices.
Something about breathing in the thin mountain air in the Rockies (and/or the recently-legalized plants available in retail stores), allows Colorado residents to let their freak flags fly. The Colorado resident in this photo is dressed as her spirit animal, and Colorado residents accept her for who she is. The state has Denver for those who want a city feel, and Aspen for those who are more into a ski-lodge lifestyle. The state’s motto “Fresh Air and Fond Memories Served Daily” could not be more fitting.
The two signs on the edge of this Connecticut marina truly shows the culture of the state. The state has the highest per-capita income and median household income in the United States. So these people are so rich, you can charge them for throwing rocks at the insane price of 50 cents a go (plus tax!). Even if other states charged for rock throwing, they wouldn’t trust people to come to the office themselves. Also, which crazy boatswain trained his seagull to attack trespassers?
Delaware is a state that has very friendly laws for businesses, so many companies are officially headquartered in the First State. Delaware is officially the First State as they were the first of the thirteen original colonies to accept the terms of the Constitution. For consumers, Delaware’s laws are friendly as well, as it is the “home of tax-free shopping.” Fashion-lovers flock here to get cheaper boutique items. The whole state has a small town kind of feeling, making the residents and visitors alike feel welcome.
Florida is a state that tries to emphasize their sunshine and oranges, yet Florida tends to be known for bizarre crimes committed by very strange citizens. They are also known for sports fanatics, like the fellow in this photo. He is a Gator fan, as you can see from his bag, Tim Tebow facepaint, and Tim Tebow sleeve tattoo. The blonde mullet and jean shorts are abnormal, even for Florida, but honestly, not too far from the fashion of the typical Florida man.
Georgia is a state whose name you have to pronounce using a drawling, wistful voice. They grow many crops, and the once-confederate state can boast being the number one producer of pecans in the world. Their most prized crops, however, are their juicy peaches. The fruit even appears on the back of the state quarter. This shack in Northern Georgia focused heavily on peach growin’, and evidently not too much focus on book learnin’. When you’re biting into the succulent fruit, you honestly don’t care how it’s spelled.
Hawaii evokes images of beautiful beaches, clear blue water, and surfers catching some waves. It’s important to remember that the islands of the Aloha State are formed on volcanoes, some of which are still active currently. This photo shows the aftermath of an eruption, where hot lava flowed down onto these school buses, overtaking them, and finally hardening into volcanic rock. This is the last state to enter the union, and although it’s small, over one million live on the eight islands that make it up.
This photo shows that Arkansas is a great state to go hunting in, as you can apparently even do it from the comfort of your own home. This citizen has his rifle and scope pointed over his deck, as the bubbles of his above-ground hot tub warm him up. He is also wearing his orange hunting cap. Safety first! You never know when another hunter might see a silhouette of a beer being drunk in the distance and might mistake him for a moose trying to unwind.
This Chicago, Illinois police car does not look like your typical black and white Dodge Charger or Crowne Victoria squad car. This SWAT vehicle looks intense, even more intense than some military humvees. This is because Chicago has had a violent crime problem for years, and is sadly known for the shootings that occur on the south side of the city. Luckily, the spirit of the city is always lifted by their sports teams, from the Michael Jordan era to the recent Cubs World Series win.
Indiana is welcoming to visitors driving through the state, especially in Tipton. The friendly folks at Sherrill’s restaurant did not quite mean what is written on their sign (hopefully), but we get that the message: they are friendly and want to welcome people. The state is also crazy about sports! They have the Hoosiers, the Indy 500 and Brickyard 400 races, the Colts, and the Pacers to follow from season to season, ensuring fun all year round in for Indiana residents.
Although most of the Wizard Of Oz does not take place in Kansas, one of the most famous lines in the movie revolves around it: “we’re not in Kansas anymore!” What we do see at the beginning of the film is the brewing of an intense tornado. This is art imitating life, as the Sunflower state tends to have thunderstorms and tornados on their weather forecast much more often than other states. It’s still worth visiting, as the heartland folks truly are the nicest in the country.
Kentucky is home to Colonel Sanders and his fried chicken. After working some odd jobs as a salesperson, Sanders developed a recipe for fried chicken to sell at a roadside restaurant, which developed eventually into the international franchise KFC. The folks who wrote this sign are not the most book savvy. Translation of their spray-painted sign: Chickens for sale, chicks and grown-ups. Honestly, though, the worse the spelling, the better the quality of the chickens, because you know the farmers are spending all day in the coop.
Most people outside of Louisiana would find this photo horrifying, but those who are native to the swampland, this picture does not seem too out of place. The biggest population of alligators in the United States is in Louisiana, with two million alligators, beating out Texas and North Carolina. This dad does not seem concerned with bringing his young son and daughter into the cage with the alligator, as the citizen knows it’s a baby one, not a 19-foot adult.
Maine is a beautiful state that has all the winter wonderland aspects of certain Canadian areas, but with the spirit of the red, white, and blue. The crab cakes near Acadia are world famous for making people salivate. The fishing in Maine is great, which is perhaps why this fellow is on a plastic chair on an ice floe with a 24 pack of beer. Or perhaps this guy lost his boat and looking for a quick substitute, complete with a small flag as his insignia.
Maryland is known for football, old-bay seasoned crab cakes, and welcoming visitors with open arms. If you’re visiting, be careful what you say about their football teams, and be careful when you drive on Maryland roads and highways. The state is known to have some of the worst drivers in the union. This is perhaps because the state is on the Maxon-Dixie line, and you have a mix of fast-paced Northern culture, and slow-moving Southern culture.
When you visit the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, you have to prepare by bringing an English-Massachusetts English dictionary. The accents here are so thick that some words are barely recognizable. This photo shows the phonetic spelling of the accent and slang, saying a fierce storm is coming. The snow and ice in the state are so intense that nobody wants to go outside. That’s probably why the Harvard and MIT crowd are so smart- they are forced to stay inside and read for most of the year.
The hunting culture in Michigan is super strong, and if you’re from the Northern area of the state, opening day of hunting season is a school holiday, so you can get out there and start shooting. There is an abundance of targets too- the deer population is so massive, that pretty much everyone has hit a deer at some point, and ruined their car. It’s so cold in Michigan that you understand that they want to collect as much fur as possible.
This picture shows the irony of ironies: Minnesota is allegedly the Sunshine State, and the sign is covered in fresh powder. The sign is actually wrong. Minnesota is the Land of 10,000 Lakes, as well as the North Star State. Minnesotans are obsessed with Prince, as he was a Minneapolis native. To stay warm, residents eat hotdish- a casserole made of tater tots, ground beef, and canned soup. You will see the North Face-clad citizens in their cars with snow chained tires heading to buy hotdish ingredients.
People in Mississippi, the Hospitality State, would love to have you over to have some pork ribs that have been smoked all day, and wow, are they succulent. The folks in the state are extremely nice and are happy due to the deep faith in Christianity that many of the fundamentalist Baptist citizens hold. Sadly, this picture also highlights the fact that obesity is a problem in Mississippi. Mississippians are natural rebels- flying the Confederate flag and ignoring their doctors’ orders to diet.
There is a lot of roadkill on the streets in Missouri. That might have something to do with the folks in Missouri driving monster trucks. They start them early- even the school buses have the huge, car-crushing wheels. The state is known as the Show-Me State, meaning that the people who live there are stubborn, loyal, conservative, and skeptical. They are also friendly: they will stop their big-wheeled cars in the middle of the road to chat with a friend in another car.
Montana has many living things roaming around in the open spaces of the least densely populated state. Wolves, coyotes, moose, and bears are abundant. Apparently, some bears like to take a bath with their Montanan, human friends. This is rare, as most folks who live in Montana absolutely love hunting animals and eating their meat. While they’re not bathing with bears, they drive- and fast. The Treasure State has no speed limit, and people zoom down the roads with no fear of getting a ticket.
Although they are not the number one corn producer, Nebraska is super proud of the huge amount that they do grow. It’s called the Cornhusker State, and all sorts of corn products are available widely like corn chowder, fritters, and pudding. The rest areas are also made of their agricultural product: hay. It’s a bit quaint, but it gets the job done. It doesn’t give much privacy, though. People use the rest spot, as Nebraskans are always drinking Kool-Aid, which was invented in their state.
This state is super White- 93% to be exact. This demographic reality is brought up on the news when presidential election rolls around, as they are the first to vote in the whole country. Politically, they are not just first, but also passionate, especially about lowering taxes, despite the fact that they do not have sales or income tax. Their state motto is the intense: “live free or die.” This might have inspired Sarah Silverman and Adam Sandler, New Hamshire citizens and comedians, to follow their unconventional career path.
Although New Jersey is known as the Garden State, most people never see the apple picking fields and hiking trails on television. What you see are tanned, buff New Jersey guys, with porcupine-like spiked hair. In popular culture, these Jersey boys have been featured in shows like the Jersey Shore. At the club, their natural habitat, they like to have shots and fist bump. Beyond hair gel, people in New Jersey define themselves based on what parkway exit they take to get home.
Lowrider cars started to become popular in the late 1940’s and early 1950’s in Los Angeles, by Mexican-Americans looking to customize their cars in a way that showed pride for their roots. Seeing as New Mexico has, as the name suggests, a huge proportion of citizens who identify as having a Hispanic background, this lowrider craze has continued here. This sign warns that true lowriders are so low, they scrape the pavement! Those in the Land of Enchantment love it there, despite the risk of UFOs.
The US News and World Report ranked the quality of North Carolina’s K-12 education at number 34 out of 50. This bottom 25 ranking is not so shocking when you see pictures like this. You would think that there was a spell-check before permanently painting the street. Clearly, whoever wrote this did not make it all the way through the “shcool” system. It’s understandable, though, as people from North Carolina have strong temptation to skip school to drink sweet tea and eat barbeque.
People from North Dakota love sports- and not just football. There is a whole association which races lawn mowers, believe it or not. Winter sports like ice fishing and hockey are also popular. This picture shows that hockey alone is good, but hockey plus guns makes it even better. The folks are also God-fearing, with more churches per-capita than in any other state. After church, they head to eat hardly-pronounceable foods like krumkaka and knoephla, which come from the residents’ Scandinavian roots.
Folks from Oklahoma like to eat anything that is deep-fried. They even eat calf fries, which are deep-fried bull testicles. They like to wash that down with a nice beer, despite the fact that their alcohol laws are strict. The liquor stores are closed Sunday, and you cannot get 5% beer anywhere else. They somehow manage to drink enough that kegs are laying around and turned into functioning bicycles. There is no vehicle better fit than this for a trip to the liquor store.
Folks from Ohio love the simple, American things in life: beer, tailgating, and football. The Ohio symbol that these people are making in the strangest of places and at the most bizarre times shows that their spirits cannot be crushed by anything. The man in the casket was probably a hardcore Buckeye and would have applauded the show of Ohio spirit, even at his own funeral.
Oregon, and specifically Portland, gives Brooklyn a run for its money when it comes to being a hipster haven. The slogan of the city is “Keep Portland Weird,” and the guy in this picture has definitely tried to live up to the ideal of his hometown. Wearing a beanie he probably knitted himself, flowing white blanket/scarf, and journaling on public transportation with a typewriter, he is keeping hipsterism alive. It’s surprising he is not doing all this while on a bicycle, as Portland is extremely bike-friendly.
Outside of Philadelphia and Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania is quite rural. The inhabitants of the bucolic areas are the Amish- the Christian group that is part of the Pennsylvania Dutch immigrant group. They speak their own dialect of English which includes a lot of German words. In Pennsylvania, the plain dress and manners of the Amish mix with modern hobbies (rollerblades were not a big trend back in Switzerland). A similar surreal feeling of a mix of the old and new occurs when Amish are seen in Walmart.
Even though Rhode Island is small, citizens of the Ocean state like to say that size does not matter. The people there are very relaxed, as they spend a lot of time on the beach and on the water in boats. The seafood is also really good, and apparently, based on this picture, the lobsters from Rhode Island really know how to joust. Perhaps the winner of this knife fight gets to stay alive, while the other is to be eaten with butter sauce.
South Carolina residents fulfill many of the stereotypes one may have about the South: they are conservative, mega-church going, and aggressively kind. This mother also shows the other Southern characteristics of loving her shotgun, her beer, and her pickup truck. This photo could be on the cover of a country music album. You can see the rest of the day of this typical South Carolina citizen: going to eat some shrimp and grits, and nursing a whiskey while watching the football game.
South Dakota is the state that most know as the home of Mount Rushmore. It also is home to a feeling of extreme trust, where markets sometimes operate on the honor system, and car and home doors are left unlocked. The prairie dogs are meant to be left alone, according to the sign in the photo, but it says nothing of the hulking bison, strangely enough. Even though they don’t appear in the photo, South Dakota is also known as the Cayote state.
People have a lot of stereotypes about what life in Tennesee must be like, including that everyone is a cowboy, while in reality, there are tons of left-leaning hipsters in Nashville. Country music and Jack Daniels are, in fact, both loved in Tennesee. Also, their college football team, the Volunteers, are beloved by the citizens of Tennesee. The fans paint themselves white (or more white than usual), and head to the game to tailgate for hours before heading into the stadium to lose their voices cheering.
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints set up shop in Salt Lake City, Utah, and their following and legacy persist to this day. Polygamy was common back in the day for the Mormons, but now it is not typical. Fundamentalist groups still engage in the practice and have been put on reality television shows, as it is strange to most. One thing that has been disseminated from Mormon culture into Utah culture is that expletives are replaced with softer words like “fudge” and “darn.”
Vermont is known to lead America in cow-to-person ratio, and looking at this picture, apparently moose are abundant as well. The Green Mountain State is also known for having hippy communes, and the culture of tolerance still persists. Maybe that’s why whoever owns this pool is letting the moose cool down. Or maybe the owner is inside eating maple syrup, a staple ingredient in all foods in Vermont. It’s amazing that they’re not all fat because along with abundant syrup, Ben and Jerry’s is headquartered in Vermont.
May 1865 marked the end of Civil War, after just over four years of intense fighting. However, the Virginians have never let go of the war, and a surprisingly high number participate in yearly re-enactments of famous battles. Going to watch one is a great way to understand what the war must have actually looked, sounded, and smelled like back in the 19th century. It’s no surprise there are so many US history buffs, as many Virginians work in politics in nearby Washington, DC.
Bigfoot is an elusive animal that is said to live in the forests in Washington state. Perhaps due to Washington resident’s legalization of smoking certain plants, they came up with the whimsical idea to claim that the sasquatch not only exists but also is officially on the grid. Bigfoot is said to have been sighted many times, with grainy photographs showing sparse evidence here and there. People might see the Sasquatch when they are out mountain biking, which is a very popular past time in Washington.
This mulleted, shirtless fellow, leaning on a pickup truck and chewing on a stick is symbolic of what West Virginia has to offer. This man definitely has spent a lot of his childhood outdoors, which is typical of the state. Since the nickname of West Virginia is the Mountain State, it is no surprise that this man is likely a skilled rafter, hiker, hunter, and camper. If you turned on his pickup truck’s radio, you might hear some music that includes the unique banjo sound.
When the snow finally melts, people tend to head to Lake Michigan with their boats. This particular boat truly represents the monster love that citizens of Wisconsin have for hanging out on the water. When out of their beloved boats, Wisconsinites can be found hunting, or socializing at a fish fry. In the winter time, people hide from the snow and eat the famous cheese (they don’t call Wisconsin America’s Dairyland for nothing) and bratwurst. Overall, folks from Wisconsin are proud of their state, as they should be!
Wyoming is a land of cowboys, and with cowboys comes the bison that they herd and hunt. Sometimes, the bison forget that they are animals and get on the road and act like cars. The traffic jams and abundant animals are worth the trouble, as there is so much meat to eat the Wyoming natives don’t know what to do with it. They make jerky, stews, and steaks, all from local bison and deer. There are certainly no protein deficiencies in the Equality State.
Georgia Part 2
Georgia boasts many tasty foods, but nothing quite says Georgia like Waffle House. It’s an all-American restaurant serving crispier on the outside, fluffy on the inside waffles, with butter and syrup oozing on top. The nicest thing about it is that no matter what time you get a craving, Waffle House is open, as they are open all day every day. A true local has a strong preference for either chunked, diced, smothered or covered when it comes to hash browns.
New Jersey Part 2
New Jersey was already home to a sizable population of spray-tanned gym rats, but it only became more popular as shows like Jersey Shore aired on television. The Garden State residents in this photo went a little far, and look orange-brown like they had just vacationed in Sicily with zero sunblock lotion, and then afterward still got a spray tan. There was a spinoff show called Geordie Shore for similar folks in Newcastle, England. Who says New Jersey has no cultural influence?
Florida Part 2
Florida is the Sunshine State, and it was named that for a good reason. Temperatures become unbearable in the summer months, and you have to be smart about where you park your car. If you don’t find a shady spot under a tree, or have a reflective cover for your windshield, no amount of air conditioning will be able to cool your car down. Not for a long time, anyway. If you’re lucky, it might start raining suddenly, as it sometimes does in Florida, which cools the car down.
Alabama Part 2
Alabama is a sweet home to faith in Jesus. Folks from Alabama are very nice, and do not mean any offense when they say that you should, “go to church or the devil will get you.” They are simply looking out for the well-being of your soul. Outside of church, folks from Alamaba love food, eating the best barbecue in the country, washed down with an RC cola, and some moon pies for dessert. Alabama also loves football: everyone is either an Alabama fan or an Auburn fan.
The Lone Star State likes to be unique. You can go through a Whataburger drive-thru on your horse in Texas. When you’re in Texas, you can wear your cowboy hat and boots and be proud of it. Everyone is super nice there unless you mess with Texas, and then good luck to you, as Texans are proud enough of their state that they would happily secede from the union to be their own country. They love freedom, and there is nothing more American than that.
Iowa is known for its agriculture- almost one-quarter of its economic output has to do with the farming business. Because of this, a lot of the scenery is bucolic and bare. The midwestern state does have some signs of civilization and corporate America. This modest roadside stop has a single vending machine, and it’s the only one for miles. The Hawkeye state does have a lot of cornfields, but Des Moines is a center for art and culture like any other capital city.
The Silver State is known for their liberal laws, and America’s playground, Las Vegas. The sign indicates that all sorts of debaucherous activities are legal, but lobsters are not allowed. The state is trying hard to not be like Maine. Apparently, this law is legit- crayfish sales are illegal in the borders of Nevada. It’s important to have some restrictions in life. One other restriction they have is access to Area 51. The Air Force base is enshrouded in mystery, and nobody without top secret access is allowed.
New York is a shoo-in for best city in the world, but the millions who live there don’t exactly care to keep it clean. Sadly, the pizza rat in the subway is not a shocking view for many from the Empire State, as it symbolizes the grittiness of the concrete jungle and also has the symbolic New York-style pizza slice. They say that the city’s tap water is what makes the pizza so delicious compared to the rest of the country’s.
New York Part 2
Major League Eating is a real sport in America, and New York is famous for hosting the biggest event in competitive eating, the Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating Contest. Every July fourth, people get on stage to eat hundreds of hot dogs in under half an hour. The competition has at least a million viewers and is even being lobbied to become an Olympic sport. New York has a big hot dog culture, with movable kiosks sold by vendors on every corner.
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