Minnesota Cities with High Vikings Demand Are Not in Ramsey County

I recently took a look at online search demand over at Google Trends for the term “Vikings” to get feel for how much people care about Minnesota’s current local NFL team. I managed to uncover a few interesting nuggets.

Vikings searches spike on Sundays, but people do search for the term “vikings” throughout the week:

Vikings searches from Minnesotans

Google Trends also reports which cities have the highest demand for a search term. Here are the highest cities within Minnesota:

Top Vikings Cities by Search Demand in Minnesota

It’s interesting to see that 4 of the top 5 cities in the state by population aren’t on that list. Do Minnesotans not care about the Vikings as much in Minneapolis, St. Paul, Rochester, or Bloomington as Minnesotans in Mankato, Winona, or Duluth? Perhaps.

Here is a map of where the top-10 cities are located. If you click a marker, you’ll see the city’s name and ranking:

It’s also interesting to note that NONE of the top-10 cities on that list are in Ramsey County. You know, the county that Zygi Wilf wants to see borrow $350,000,000 and make debt payments on that for decades through a .5% county sales tax (a 7% increase over the current sales tax paid in the county).

Additionally, none of those cities are in Hennepin County, where the Metrodome resides. It’s almost as if people can enjoy a professional football without having it in their back yard.

To get a sense of how popular the Vikings are, I compared them to football in general:

Football vs Vikings

What that tells me is that Minnesotans care about football. A lot. In fact, it seems quite possible that they care about football more than they care about the Vikings’ brand of football.

It also looks like the average Minnesotan cares more about football on Saturdays than Sundays. Once the Vikings regular season started, it appears that some of the Saturday “football” demand shifted to Vikings Sundays.

Here is a look at the Minnesota cities where “football” is popular:

Minnesota Cities for "football" is popular

Again, none of these cities are in Ramsey County.

If I lived in Ramsey County, I would wonder why commissioners like Tony Bennett are trying to force county residents to pay for something that has a negative return on investment, and doesn’t even seem to have a high demand compared to other communities in the state.

This, to me, helps makes the case for state wide funding over putting such an insane burden on a single, small county like Ramsey. But, as we know very well, the state does not have $650,000,000 sitting around. The state just shut down due to arguments over how much to cut health care, K-12 education, and higher education programs, and ended up with a budget that borrowed from schools and shifted some of our tax burden on local property owners. That does not sound like a state that’s in a position to make debt payments of more than $2 million per month for decades in order to allow Zygi Wilf to build a 21,000 car parking lot in Arden Hills, and for Vikings fans to save $45 per ticket per game.

3 thoughts on “Minnesota Cities with High Vikings Demand Are Not in Ramsey County”

  1. One key problem with your interpretation of the data:

    “Google Trends calculates the ratio of searches for your term coming from each city divided by total Google searches coming from the same city”

    I think this means it is proportional, so Minneapolis and St. Paul almost certainly have the most searches for “vikings” and “football” but those represent a smaller percentage of their total Google searches (because they have far more searchable businesses, schools, roads, etc. than Mankato and other smaller cities).

    Not much of a conclusion you can draw from that.

  2. @Tony, good point. The relative search demand is the relative demand of each city within itself compared to others. I could have been more clear about that. That supports what I was trying to get across: cities that have a high level of Vikings fandom within them are probably more likely to support Vikings welfare.

  3. Hello citizens of Ramsey County and the state of Minnesota! I would very much like to keep my computer repair business in the state. However, I’m going to require $700 million from you in order to keep my business profitable. If you don’t do it soon I may have to relocate to Los Angeles. In return you get no ownership rights or revenues. Oh and I would also like you to build me a corporate headquarters, 22,000 parking spots, and a convention center. It’s only fair. Think of the computers!

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