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2nd Annual America’s Manliest Cities

Charlotte Takes Over As “America’s Manliest City” While Portland Falls To Last

Second Annual “America’s Manliest Cities” Rankings Includes New Criteria, Developed in Partnership between COMBOS® Snacks and Research Expert Bert Sperling

HACKETTSTOWN, N.J. (June 22, 2010) – Mars Chocolate North America announced today the release of the second annual COMBOS® “America’s Manliest Cities” study – crowning Charlotte, N.C. with this year’s top spot of manliness while last year’s top city, Nashville, Tenn., dropped to fourth in the rankings. Chicago had the biggest move in the rankings, going from 46th in 2009 to seventh this year. The study is commissioned by COMBOS® Brand in partnership with Bert Sperling, the research expert behind the popular “Best Places to Live” studies.

The COMBOS® “America’s Manliest Cities” study ranks 50 major metropolitan areas, using manly criteria like the number of home improvement stores, steak houses, pickup trucks and motorcycles per capita. “We’re excited to release the second installment of the COMBOS® ‘America’s Manliest Cities’ rankings,” said Craig Hall, general manager, Mars Chocolate North America. “Charlotte is NASCAR country so we’re not surprised that they’ve taken over the top spot. After all, COMBOS® has been the ‘Official Cheese-Filled Snack of NASCAR’ since 2002.”

Several cities made big jumps up the rankings this year – Chicago, Baltimore, Washington D.C. and Philadelphia all broke the top 10 after being in the lower half of last year’s rankings. In addition to cities improving or declining in returning categories, the change in rankings can also be attributed to a new category this year – manly occupations (fire fighters, police officers, construction workers and EMT personnel).

The manly occupations category was added this year to recognize the hard-working guys that make so many American cities great places to live.

Supporting the theme of manliness, COMBOS® also recently launched its Zone Sweet Home sweepstakes at www.COMBOS.com – an opportunity for guys to win an ultimate Home Theater Zone, Tailgating Zone or Gaming Zone, each worth up to $25,000.

Manly Study Highlights

  • Charlotte, N.C. now has chief bragging rights on manliness thanks to its top 10 rankings in the sports, manly lifestyle, manly retail stores, manly occupations and salty snack sales categories.
  • Chi-town natives have another reason to applaud local police officers and firefighters. Chicago moved up 39 spots in the rankings to No. 7 overall, partly thanks to a strong ranking (No. 3) in the manly occupations category.
  • Los Angeles, San Francisco, San Diego, Sacramento, Calif., Oakland, Calif. and Portland, Ore. failed to pull themselves out of the basement of manliness as they each remained in the bottom 10 spots of the rankings for a second consecutive year.
  • Tennessee men embrace a manly lifestyle as Memphis and Nashville finished first and second in the “manly lifestyle” category that tracks the number of pickup trucks and motorcycles registered in the city, sports TV viewing habits, fishing and home improvement.
  • Long known as a city for diehard sports fans, Boston backed up that claim by taking the No.1 spot in the sports category thanks not only to the number of professional sports teams, but the quality of professional sports in the city.
  • The men of Oklahoma City still know how to snack with gusto. For the second year in a row, their city owns the highest purchase rate of salty snacks, such as COMBOS®.

The Manly Methodology*

The rankings were determined using 50 of the largest metropolitan areas as defined by the United States Census Bureau, which includes a central city and the surrounding county (or counties). Each metro area received a manliness rating between 0 and 100 based on how well it performed in each of the study’s manly categories. All data was adjusted by the current population of the cities to arrive at “per capita” figures, providing an accurate comparison between cities of varying sizes.

2010 “America’s Manliest Cities” Rankings

  1. Charlotte, NC (▲ 1 spot)
  2. Columbus, OH (▲ 5 spots)
  3. Kansas City, MO (▲ 5 spots)
  4. Nashville, TN (▼ 3 spots)
  5. Baltimore, MD (▲ 32 spots)
  6. Milwaukee, WI (▲ 11 spots)
  7. Chicago, IL (▲ 39 spots)
  8. Indianapolis, IN (▲ 1 spot)
  9. Washington, D.C. (▲ 36 spots)
  10. Philadelphia, PA (▲ 20 spots)
  11. Denver, CO (▼ 6 spots)
  12. St. Louis, MO (▼ 6 spots)
  13. Columbia, SC (No Change)
  14. Harrisburg, PA (▲ 12 spots)
  15. Cleveland, OH (▲ 4 spots)
  16. Orlando, FL (▼ 2 spots)
  17. Salt Lake City, UT (▼ 1 spot)
  18. Birmingham, AL (▲ 5 spots)
  19. Detroit, MI (▲ 1 spot)
  20. Cincinnati, OH (▼ 16 spots)
  21. Richmond, VA (▼ 9 spots)
  22. New Orleans, LA (▲ 5 spots)
  23. Phoenix, AZ (▼ 1 spot)
  24. Houston, TX (▲ 15 spots)
  25. Oklahoma City, OK (▼ 22 spots)
  26. Toledo, OH (▼ 16 spots)
  27. Minneapolis, MN (▼9 spots)
  28. Memphis, TN (▼ 17 spots)
  29. Louisville, KY (▲ 2 spots)
  30. Seattle, WA (▲ 10 spots)
  31. Boston, MA (▲ 7 spots)
  32. Atlanta, GA (No Change)
  33. Providence, RI (No Change)
  34. Dayton, OH (▼ 19 spots)
  35. New York, NY (▲ 15 spots)
  36. Jacksonville, FL (▼ 15 spots)
  37. Pittsburgh, PA (▼ 8 spots)
  38. Grand Rapids, MI (▼ 14 spots)
  39. Dallas, TX (▼ 5 spots)
  40. Rochester, NY (▼ 4 spots)
  41. Las Vegas, NV (▼ 13 spots)
  42. San Diego, CA (▲ 1 spot)
  43. San Francisco, CA (▲ 5 spots)
  44. Tampa, FL (▼ 19 spots)
  45. Sacramento, CA (▼ 4 spots)
  46. Buffalo, NY (▼ 11 spots)
  47. Oakland, CA (▼ 3 spots)
  48. Los Angeles, CA (▲ 1 spot)
  49. Miami, FL (▼ 7 spots)
  50. Portland, OR (▼ 3 spots)

See Category Scores

The Manly Guy Test"

About Mars Chocolate North America:

Mars Chocolate North America is the North American chocolate operations of Mars, Incorporated. Mars, Incorporated is a private, family-owned company founded in 1911 and employing more than 65,000 associates at over 230 sites, including 135 factories, in 68 countries worldwide. Headquartered in McLean, Virginia, U.S.A., Mars, Incorporated is one of the world’s largest food companies, generating global revenues of more than $28 billion annually and operating in six business segments: Chocolate, Petcare, Wrigley Gum and Confections, Food, Drinks, and Symbioscience. These segments produce some of the world’s leading brands: Chocolate – M&M’S®, SNICKERS®, DOVE®, GALAXY®, MARS®, MILKY WAY® and TWIX®; Petcare – PEDIGREE®, WHISKAS®, SHEBA®, CESAR® and ROYAL CANIN®; Wrigley – ORBIT®, EXTRA®, STARBURST®, DOUBLEMINT® and SKITTLES®; Food – UNCLE BEN’S®, DOLMIO®, EBLY®, MASTERFOODS® and SEEDS OF CHANGE®; Drinks – KLIX® and FLAVIA®; Symbioscience – WISDOM PANEL™, SERAMIS®, CIRKUHEALTH™ and COCOAPRO®.

For more information, please visit www.mars.com.

* For detailed methodology and rankings on each of the factors in the Combos® “America’s Manliest Cities” study, please request a copy of the extended Findings Report.

Lauren Nodzak
908.850.2291 – office
908.914.5701– mobile

Jason Sparks
312.988.2323 – office
734.330.4698 – mobile