Every state is number one in something, but some claims to fame are pretty surprising. New Jersey has the highest rate of homeowners installing solar panels. Illinois has the highest rate of gang membership!? Here's a fun, bird's eye view of state superlatives with an energy related twist: we've noted which states have the most forward-thinking energy policies and which have the most room for improvement.
There are more species of wildlife living in Alabama's rivers than any other state, including three kinds of mussels.
Alaska has the highest number of suicides (23.1) per 100.000 deaths. It also has the lowest state & local tax burdens in the country.
Not only in Arizona's landscape often copper in color, they also leas the nation in copper production, making 750 thousand tons of copper a year.
Arkansas accounts for approximately 46% of U.S. rice production.
California has the largest economy in the U.S. and 8th largest in the world. It also has the most UFO sightings every year (6.331).
Colorado ranks #1 for beer production, but not beer bellies. In 2010 Colorado was named the skinniest state two years running..
A 2010 study ranked Connecticut #1 in overall well-being of citizens, based on health, education, and income.
The first state has more doctoral-level (Ph.D) scientists and engineers, as a percentage of the population, than any other state.
Orlando attract more visitors than any other amusement park destination in the United States.
Georgia has the largest historical district in the country. It's located in Savannah which is chock full of 18th & 19th century architecture.
Hawaii has the most expensive electricity in the U.S. so it also recently ranked #1 as the state most ripe for solar energy development.
Idaho has the most usable hot springs in the nation, with about 130 soakable out of 340.
Surprise Illinois, not California, has the highest rate of gang membership in the country (8-11 members per 1,000 population).
The south central Indiana area is the nation's leading producer of building limestone.
In an average year, Iowa produces the most amount of corn on any state, and more than most whole countries.
On average, Kansas produces more wheat than any other state. Nearly 1/5 of all wheat grown in the U.S. is grown in KS.
At more than $6 billion worth, the underground vault at Fort Knox has the largest amount of gold stated anywhere in the world.
Louisiana produced more than 90% of the domestic crawfish crop. More than 1,600 farmers produce crawlish in some 111,000 acres of ponds.
Maine has the lowest rate of incarceration per capita, a full 15 percent lower than the next lowest state, Minnesota.
Maryland households are currently the wealthiest in the country, with a 2009 median household income of $69,272.
Massachusetts is ranked by many as having edge energy policies in the country. It also ranks #1 for speeding tickets.
Michigan has the longest freshwater shoreline in the world. It also has the largest number of public golf courses in the country.
The Mall of America, the largest mall in the U.S., generates nearly $2 billion in economic revenue for the entire state.
In 2010 Mississippi had the #1 obesity rate for the 5th year in a row. It also ranked the most generous state based on charitable donations versus income.
Kansas City has more miles of freeway per capita that any metro area with over 1 million residents.
Montana has the largest grizzly bear population in the lower 48 states.
Nebraska produces more commercial red meat than any other state.
Nevada is #1 in teen pregnancies, home foreclosures, and meth use, but it also has more mountain ranges than any U.S. state.
New Hampshire's State House is the oldest state Capitol in which a legislature still meets in its original chambers.
Considered the best state in the country to go solar, the average solar household in NJ makes $5.000 a year in SCREC money, just for having panels on the roof.
The palace of the governors is oldest continuosly used public building in the United States.
New York boasts the biggest city in the country, by a long shot. The 5 boroughs are home to 118% more residents than the next largest metro area, Los Angeles.
NC leads in sweet potato productiom, supplying 40% of the annual U.S. production of the root vegetable.
North Dakota grows more sunflowers than any other state, with 1,412,300 pounds harvested in 2010.
The buckeye state currently ranks first in the production of swiss cheese.
Has more man-made lakes (200) than any other state.
OKCupid recently outed Oregon as the most gay curious state in the country. It also has the most ghost towns.
State farm reports Pennsylvannia experiences more deer collisions than any other state.
Rhode Island has the highest rate of marijuana use in the country (10.3 percent ) and alcohol use too (63.1 percent).
South Carolina has the largest Gingko farm in the world.
South Dakota is the home of the Dakota, Lakota and Nakota tribes, which make up the Sioux Nation.
There are more horses per capita in Shelby County than any other county in the United States.
Texas has the most windy land area in the U.S. and therefore the most potential for wind energy development.
Utah has the highest literacy rate (94%), fastest growing job market, is the youngest state (median age 28), and has the lowest smoking rate (9.8%).
One study recently found Vermont to be the nations smartest state based on 21 different factors.
Virginia currently boasts the best high school in the nation, Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology in Alexandria.
The percentage of non-religious people in Washington is the highest of any state.
West Virginia is tops in toothlessness. It has the highest percentage of adults 65 and over who have had all of their natural teeth extracted (40.5%).
Wisconsin has more skilled and licensed cheesemakers than any other stated.
Wyoming is the "gassiest" state. It has the highest usage of gasoline per capita.