LAKEWOOD, Ohio — I've always said that Valentine's Day evening is a great night to go out if you're in the market for love, because it's fairly easy to tell who's single.
If someone is out at the bar unaccompanied on Valentine's Day, there's a pretty good chance that they're available. Or, if they ARE in a relationship, it's apparently not going very well and they might be open to an upgrade.
What I'm saying is that if you're hungry for love, it's like a lonely person buffet out there tonight, folks. And apparently, if you happen to live in one of two Cleveland suburbs, that buffet offers a remarkable number of entree selections (I am done with the buffet metaphor now, I promise).
A recent report analyzed U.S. Census data to determine which suburbs have the most single residents, and not only did our own Lakewood come in it at No. 3, but Euclid scored the very top spot for most single people per capita.
According to that study, 62% of Euclidians are currently single, with Lakewood not far behind at 58%, separated only by Hoboken -- AKA "The Romance Capital of New Jersey."
Now, of course, I take all of these click-baity studies with a grain of salt, especially when they come from sources called things like "SolitaireBliss.com" -- which is apparently also a website where single people play card games together or something. So it's not exactly The Wall Street Journal, but they did use actual census data. and this looks fairly legit.
But if this is true, how is it possible? How do we have two of the top three suburban single hot spots in the whole country?
For insight, I spoke with an ambassador from each of the two lonely heart boroughs in question. Parnell Egan is an owner of The West End Tavern, an iconic Lakewood spot that's popular with the single types. Over the years, he's witnessed his fair share of romantic connection, and estimates that north of 70-80 people have met at his establishment and gone on to get married.
Parnell says one reason Lakewood has so many singles comes down to simple mathematics: population density.
Euclid Ambassador Brandon Lyons met us at That Breakfast Place, a popular spot where he hosts a regular speed dating event. He told me that he thinks the large number of apartment buildings have drawn singles to the area, but above all else, he believes that Euclid's proximity to Lake Erie offers its own romantic draw.
Maybe he was onto something; both Suburbs ARE right on the lake. Are single people drawn to the romance of the sea combined with a relatively affordable rental market?
But the study revealed even more: Euclid can also stake claim as the fourth-most-divorced city in America.
So in summation, based on this study, if you’re looking for a suburb with a high percentage of singles, find one with these 4 key traits:
- Lots bars
- Lots of people
- High divorce rate.
- Large, enchanting body of water
And if you do happen to be looking to meet someone tonight, consider that a cheap Uber ride to Euclid or Lakewood could improve your odds considerably, at least from a purely statistical standpoint. Even if it doesn't work out, you can always go to SolitaireBliss.com to play cards alone, so you've got a Plan B.
Happy Valentine's Day, folks.