11 Small Towns Around America That Have Interesting Claims To Fame

There are loads of bizarro places across America, and loads of towns known for being the "capital of" or the "hometown of" something extremely specific and weird. And the times you see these types of places most are on road trips.

So the next time you're driving near these fine American towns, take that detour and head on over to these towns that have, shall we say, interesting claims to fame.

Punxsutawney, PA: The home of the weather-predicting groundhog
The small PA town rolls back into the spotlight every year come February 2, when the "inner circle" escorts Phil the groundhog out in public to Gobbler's Knob to see if he sees his shadow. For the record, he saw his shadow on the 2nd this year.

Riverside, Iowa: The future birthplace of Captain Kirk
On March 22, 2228, Captain Kirk will be born. A plaque commemorating the event sits behind a former barber shop in town. There's also an annual Trek Fest because of course.
riverside iowa

Corbin, KY: The birthplace of KFC
Way back when, Colonel Sanders (aka Harland David Sanders) created the recipe for the famous KFC while he was serving food to roadside diners in town. Today, visitors can tour the restored cafe Sanders, which was the original home to the chain.
corbin kentucky

Bentonville, Arkansas: Home of the original Walton's Five and Dime and Walmart's headquarters
Sam Walton's first Five and Dime store in downtown Bentonville is now also the Walmart Museum. The big box company's headquarters are in town, as is Crystal Bridges, a huge, Moshe Safdie-designed art museum founded by heiress Alice Walton.
bentonville arkansas

Marfa, TX: Home of That Weird Prada "Store"
The much-beloved art installation might be moving , but check it put this tiny West Texas town on the map when it opened in 2005.
prada marfa

Scottsboro, AL: The lost luggage capital of the world
This tiny town in northern Alabama is home to the massive Unclaimed Baggage Center, which is basically where your unclaimed stuff goes to get bought by others.
unclaimed baggage center

Bardstown, Ky: The bourbon capital of the world
Bourbon's the name of the game in this town, which is one of the "best small towns in America". Jim Beam's distillery is in nearby Clermont, though the Noe family still calls Bardstown home.
bardstown bourbon

Claxton, GA: The fruitcake capital of the world
An Italian immigrant opened the original Claxton Bakery in 1910. Along with the nearby Georgia Fruit Cake Company, the family-run company produced 4 million pounds of fruit cake in 2012.
claxton georgia fruitcake

Metropolis, IL: Superman's hometown
Superman got a hometown in 1972 in the form of Metropolis, a southern Illinois town. There is now a 15-foot bronze statue of the Man of Steel in the middle of, um, Superman Square. For those keeping track, the town went whole hog and erected a Lois Lane statue down the street and even the town's newspaper is The Metropolis Planet. V. clever, folks.
metropolis superman

Austin, MN: The hometown of SPAM
Hormel, the maker of SPAM, is based in town, so it's only fitting that they have a 16,500-square-foot museum dedicated to the stuff.
spam museum

Oak Ridge, TN: The 'atomic city'/the 'secret city'
In 1942, the federal government purchased 60,000 acres to create a temporary city that would house the Manhattan Project. The town, which sits about 22 miles away from Knoxville, was essentially a secret. Today, the DOE still runs the Oak Ridge National Laboratory, where one of the world's fastest supercomputers hangs out.
oak ridge tennessee


51 U.S. Attractions & Facts

Popular in the Community