So, SmartAsset says to CNBC, "Hey, have we got a fun college town for you!" CNBC says, "Thanks, we'll let that Griz gang know."

Total speculation on the conversation, there. The point is, this wasn't just a few random twenty-somethings chanting, "We're the funnest! Er, we mean the most fun."  Let's actually dive into how the data was compiled and give a rousing "HELL YEAH" to Missoula, Montana, and all those fun-loving people at which the results were aimed.

University of Montana News Service today (Monday) tells us that Missoula, home to the University of Montana, has landed on top of a national list for its fun factor. A survey was conducted by SmartAsset, a national financial information marketplace. Data from the U.S. Census Bureau and MIT was analyzed to appraise the best places for new college graduates.

CNBC published the survey, and according to the results, for those aged 20 to 29 with a college degree, Missoula is the place to be for entertainment. The survey’s methodology evaluated local demographic and business metrics' social potential, based on the population in the 20-29 age group, the number of restaurants per-capita, the number of bars per-capita (you knew that was coming) and entertainment venues.


University of Montana Vice President of Marketing Communications and Brand Management, Jenny Petty, was quoted as saying, “Missoula’s vibrancy and cultural depth – for a town its size – is one of the greatest assets to UM.

"UM just happens to be located in one of the most unique entertainment hubs in the Rockies and we’re going to continue to leverage and celebrate that.”

UM News Service points out that Missoula’s colorful atmosphere's impact on enrollment, as the University places the city’s access to wilderness, concerts, diversity of population and public transportation as part of the UM experience.

LeAnn Meyer, Director of UM Alumni Relations/Alumni Association President, took it a step further, pointing out that, "Today’s college graduates are confronting an uncertain economy, inflation and rising costs of living. Many are choosing to move to smaller cities after graduation. Missoula fits that bill for a small-town feel, with the entertainment landscape of a metro area and ample recreation. It’s the best of both worlds and we’re getting that feedback from young alumni and new students.”


Many students report musical acts promoted by Missoula’s Logjam Presents and the unique concert venues like the KettleHouse Amphitheater and The Wilma offer a vibrancy to their campus experience. Students also report enjoying numerous year-round activities through the Missoula Downtown Partnership and Missoula Downtown Association.


In September, UM reported a 12.5% increase in first-year students from Montana. UM’s student body is now 66.5% Montana residents. Also, enrollment figures are up for Native students, Missoula College and first-generation students!

Now those were some FUN figures, right? More details on the survey can be found here.

Fall is Best Season in Troy, MT

LOOK: Where people in Montana are moving to most

Stacker compiled a list of states where people from Montana are moving to the most using data from the U.S. Census Bureau.

Gallery Credit: Stacker

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