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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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The BattalionMay 4, 2024

Keep College Station weird: Aggieland ranked No. 5 on hipster city poll, which isn’t as surprising as you’d think

Photo by By Shelby Knowles
C-Stat hipsters favor coffeeshops, study says

College Station is known for Aggieland, its country atmosphere and especially its conservative culture. It’s not known for being in any way associated with the vintage-wearing, non-conforming hipster subculture much more identifiable with places like New York City or Austin.
However, these were two of the hipster-invaded places that failed to make the Top U.S Cities for Hipsters list constructed by a analysis. Instead, the list consisted of places like Iowa City at No. 17, Hoboken, New Jersey, at No. 1 and, wait for it — our beloved College Station was ranked No. 5 for the top hipster cities in the nation.
It shocked me, too, at first. But taking into account the characterstics analyzed in each area of the country, it makes pretty good sense that College Station, a small Texas town, is high on the list.
First, a little background on the hipster subculture. Urban Dictionary defines “hipster” as follows: A subculture of men and women typically in their 20s and 30s that value independent thinking, counter-culture, progressive politics, an appreciation of art and indie-rock, creativity, intelligence and witty banter. From my own experience (I grew up outside of Austin and passed through adolescence very much absorbed in the hipster sphere), I can verify that definition. Hipsters are also easily identified by long mountain-man beards, flannels, androgynous characteristics, thrifted retro clothing, shoes and accessories, and are seen passing their time in coffee shops, among other locations. Which brings me to how Aggieland has been dubbed a hipster hub. focused on these four demographics in its analysis: Age, level of education and number of coffeeshops and yoga studios. The website found that the common denominators with all the “hip” cities on the list were the high concentration of the 20-22 age group, the people in that group pursuing a higher level of education and the number of coffeeshops and yoga studios in the area.
College Station consists mostly of college students, ages 18-23, give or take, and is home to approximately 20 coffeeshops, excluding major chains such as Starbucks, and about five yoga studios. 
To give some comparison, these numbers are multiplied in places like Austin and New York. The reason, I would guess, why College Station ranked ahead of these places is there are more hipsters per coffee shop and yoga studio here then there are in the Texas Capitol City and the Big Apple.
This most likely applies to the other places on the list that people were shocked to see called hipster sanctuaries, particularly small college towns consisting of a large population of young people.
I’ve seen mixed reactions among Aggies to the study done, mainly incredulity. But I assure you, once you enter the hipster’s natural habitat, you’ll find that College Station is more hipster-ridden than you previously thought.
It’s next to impossible to walk into Sweet Eugene’s or Mugwalls or the Village Cafe and not spot one studying in the corner, wearing thick-rimmed glasses that may or may not be fake, sipping a cup of coffee and jamming out to Arctic Monkeys or Bon Iver. 
College Station making this list may just be because of the hipster-to-coffeeshop ratio, but I see it as another sign of the art scene growing out of this long-time conservative region. If you’ve never stepped foot in one of the cafes around town, I encourage you to try it out and see what you find — unless you’re too cool for that. 
Katie Canales is a journalism sophomore and 
life & arts editor for The Battalion.

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