Towns have a vibe to them. They have a feel and an energy that is seemingly palpable. And the more people you know from a town and the more you visit the more you feel it.

If you don't have time to visit a city you can just find a list of statistics to arbitrarily define happiness in a town. That's what the folks at did when they compiled their list of the 10 happiest places in South Dakota.

Their rankings were as follows:

  1. Harrisburg
  2. Tea
  3. Pierre
  4. Brandon
  5. Watertown
  6. Sioux Falls
  7. Aberdeen
  8. Spearfish
  9. Rapid City
  10. Brookings

The rankings were based on things that don't automatically equate to happiness, some that could create unhappiness, but they generally were positive things. The number of college graduates, the number of people who make over $75 per year, commute times, and the number of people who have families.

The top two towns on the list, Harrisburg and Tea, fared well because the majority of their citizens make over $75,000 a year, averaging 58.6 percent between the two making that cash. The only other city on the list that more than half of the citizens make that much money was Brandon.

The commute from Harrisburg was slightly shorter and the marriage rate in Tea was five percent lower. Depending on one's perspective that could be a reason for happiness maybe?

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