There is no shortage of funny city names in the US. When you get off the beaten path, away from familiar cities like New York and San Francisco, you can find a treasure trove of oddly named places. Next time you’re traveling, you might want to get some tasty bacon in Bacon Level, Alabama, or think about watching your back in Cut and Shoot, Texas. From Peculiar to Monkey’s Eyebrow, here’s our list of funny American city names that we think will make you smile.
- Peculiar, MO
- Cut and Shoot, TX
- Why, AZ
- Whynot, NC
- Boring, OR
- No Name, CO
- American Fork, UT
- Chicken, AK
- Bacon Level, AL
- Tightwad, MO
- Jackpot, NV
- Ding Dong, TX
- Bat Cave, NC
- Monkey’s Eyebrow, KY
1. Peculiar, MO
A town called Peculiar is an apt place to start a list of oddly named towns. It was named by a postmaster general who liked the name Peculiar and the town’s unofficial slogan is “Peculiar, Missouri: Where the Odds are With You”, which we think is a delightful play on words.
2. Cut and Shoot, TX
This might seem like an obvious name for a town in Texas, but it’s still pretty weird. According to local legend, it was named after a dispute that looked like it would turn violent. What was the dispute about? Possibly a preacher who, shockingly, went to saloons and dancehalls! The scandal.
3. Why, AZ
Why, why, why, Arizona? You might think this tiny town would be home to a bunch of very philosophical residents but it was actually just named after a Y junction of roads that met there.
4. Whynot, NC
Why’s even more philosophical companion city is Whynot in North Carolina. Actually, though, this city was named out of boredom when a farmer, fed-up with local residents continually suggesting new names, said, “Let’s name it Whynot, and let’s go home!”
5. Boring, OR
Speaking of boredom, there are a few towns called Boring in the US. But we think the one in Oregon has embraced it the best by becoming a sister city to Dull in Scotland, and Bland in Australia. What a trio.
6. No Name, CO
If you thought it couldn’t get any more boring than Boring, here’s No Name, swooping in to take the dull crown. Apparently, No Name is in a very scenic area in Colorado, surrounded by No Name Creek and No Name Canyon.
7. American Fork, UT
To kick off our food-related names, we’re starting with American Fork in Utah. This is not a place where enormous forks are produced so people can enjoy American-sized food portions, but rather it’s on the American Fork River.
8. Chicken, AK
What came first, the chicken or Chicken, Alaska? Spoiler alert, it was definitely the chicken. But, the town of Chicken is actually named for the ptarmigan, another type of bird. Early settlers in the state survived off ptarmigan but, fearful of misspelling it, opted for Chicken instead. Can’t say we blame them.
9. Bacon Level, AL
The most delicious town in America? Bacon Level got its very literal name when some stolen bacon was found on level ground. Does Alabama have really good bacon? Better head there to find out.
10. Tightwad, MO
This Missouran town is definitely one of the funniest town names on the list for us. Who would name their town Tightwad? Apparently, a town that was home to a very tightfisted man, around whom so many local legends have sprung, that no one is quite sure which is true.
11. Jackpot, NV
At the other end of the monetary spectrum is Jackpot, which is in Nevada, of course. There are a lot of casinos there, obviously.
12. Ding Dong, TX
Is someone at the door? Oh no, it’s just Ding Dong, Texas. This town was named when two men named Bell hung up a sign on their store that had bells and the line Ding Dong on it. Imaginative.
13. Bat Cave, NC
Quite possibly the coolest address in America is Bat Cave, North Carolina. Imagine being able to tell people you live in [the] Bat Cave. Unfortunately, you’re unlikely to bump into Batman here, rather you’re more likely to see actual bats in the local caves.
14. Monkey’s Eyebrow, K. Y
Certainly one of the funniest named cities in the US is Monkey’s Eyebrow, Kentucky. No one is quite sure how the town got its name, but one explanation is that from above, the town looks like a monkey’s eyebrow. That really doesn’t make the name any more normal, though.
Which of these places would you most like to visit?
We’re putting Monkey’s Eyebrow at the top of our list, but you might prefer to head north to Chicken or take a photo of yourself with the signs for both Why and Whynot. A good place to start though would be Peculiar in Missouri and, in the same state, you can take your friend who has short arms and deep pockets to Tightwad.
Laura is a freelance writer and was an ESL teacher for eight years. She was born in the UK and has lived in Australia and Poland, where she writes blogs for Lingoda about everything from grammar to dating English speakers. She’s definitely better at the first one. She loves travelling and that’s the other major topic that she writes on. Laura likes pilates and cycling, but when she’s feeling lazy she can be found curled up watching Netflix. She’s currently learning Polish, and her battle with that mystifying language has given her huge empathy for anyone struggling to learn English. Find out more about her work in her portfolio.