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Minnesota and Wisconsin's most popular Google searches in 2023

Google unveils top searches of 2023
Google unveils top searches of 2023 00:37

MINNEAPOLIS — Google on Monday released its "Year in Search," which collected 2023's top global queries, but what about a bit closer to home?

The ongoing Israel-Hamas war topped global news trends in 2023, followed by the Titanic-bound submersible that imploded in June and the devastating earthquakes in Turkey and Syria early in the year.

Unfortunately, Google didn't release 2023 search treads specifically for U.S. states. However, by utilizing Google Trends we can get a pretty good idea of what people are searching for in Minnesota and Wisconsin. Here's what we found for all of 2023. 

Popular searches in Minnesota

Minnesota State Fair: It's no coincidence that one of the biggest events of the summer in Minnesota is also one of the top search terms in the state. Subtopics include tickets, new foods and attendance.

Air quality: Minnesota's air quality was a huge topic in 2023. Canadian wildfires led to hazy conditions over the summer, prompting numerous air quality alerts. At times, Minnesota's air quality was among the worst in the world. WCCO investigative reporter Jonah Kaplan and photojournalist Mike Durenberger traveled to Manitoba — the source of some of the wildfire smoke affecting Minnesota — to give you a first-hand look at the problem.

Minnesota State Flag: This topic started to get more traction later on in the year when the State Emblem Redesign Commission began narrowing down finalists for a new state flag and seal. That happened in November and since then, a seal has been decided on. The commission has until the new year to decide on the new state flag. 

Marijuana: The topic of legalized cannabis for adult use in Minnesota was a wildly popular topic in 2023 and, like the aforementioned topics, was also one of the most-viewed story topics on Legalization officially began on Aug. 1, but it will take some time before you'll be able to find some at a local dispensary. The new law also allows for growing marijuana at home, with limitations. 

Minnesota Twins: It was a magical season for the Twins, who ended an 18-game playoff losing streak and a 21-year series win drought. While they were ultimately beaten by the Astros in the ALDS, it was one heck of a ride. Here's to next year. 

In a separate study, also utilized Google Trends to find some of the more nationally-focused items that are being searched in Minnesota. These terms included Damar Hamlin, Connections NYT, ChatGPT, Weather 10 Days, Barbie Movie and Travis Kelce. 

Popular searches in Wisconsin

Air quality: Canadian wildfire smoke affected numerous states in the midwest, including Wisconsin. So it's not surprising this was also a popular search term in Wisconsin. 

Wisconsin Supreme Court election: In August, Wisconsin's highest court flipped to a majority 4-3 liberal control after Justice Janet Protasiewicz was elected. More recently, Democrats in Wisconsin have urged the court to overturn Republican-drawn legislative maps.

Northern lights: The aurora borealis is popular pretty much anywhere it can be seen, including Minnesota, but Wisconsinites were extra mindful about checking in on when to see the northern lights. 

Wisconsin volleyball schedule: The Badgers volleyball team is on a roll and heading to the Final Four, garnering plenty of interest from those in Wisconsin. The Gopher volleyball team has also seen success this season despite some challenges, including a coaching transition. 

Aaron Rodgers news: The former Green Bay Packers quarterback is now a member of the New York Jets, but Packer fans just can't seem to stop checking in on him. Although Rodgers was sidelined nearly immediately due to an Achilles injury, he's still providing plenty of headlines. 

In both states, "unclaimed property" and "debt ceiling news" are popular search terms. 

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