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June 15, 2021

Who is most likely to ask “What hat should I wear in Arizona?”

Here in the Arizona we have snowbirds. An annual migratory species, snowbirds flock to the 48th state in mid-autumn and roost until May or so. Then they flitter off to northern climes where temperatures only hit triple digits if someone’s running a bad fever.

While they’re here, snowbirds never ask us, “What hat should I wear in Arizona?” They’re familiar with the area. They know what to bring. (They’re also people, in case we didn’t mention that, who might wear hats.)

But there are also people who move here during the summer. To stay. Usually it’s for a career change or family business or something. And of course, moving during the summer is good if they have kids. It’s less disruptive to move between school years.

Still, moving to the 10th hottest state in the U.S. during its hottest months raises some questions. (The first would probably be, “Are you crazy?!” but we wouldn’t be rude enough to ask that.) After all, new residents are certain to need some advice on how to dress for their new address. And that includes what they should wear on their head.

 

Arizona doesn’t have a state hat

Does any state actually have a “state hat”? Other than Texas, of course, where the cowboy hat has been the official headwear since 2015. Anybody else? Maybe that wedge of cheese in Wisconsin, but that seems to be only for football games.

Arizona has as much claim to the cowboy hat as Texas. Maybe more, since in Arizona, a cowboy hat is usually a real, by-god working hat. Not some kind of tall, white, dandified cowboy cosplay. Just sayin’.

And while the cowboy hat would probably be a perfectly good answer for us to give when a new resident or visitor worried about the sun asks, “What hat should I wear in Arizona?” we probably wouldn’t answer that way. Wouldn’t want somebody to think our new neighbor was actually from Texas, after all. Also because cowboy hats aren’t … ’scuse us … ain’t for everybody.

So when somebody asks us what hat they need, our first response is, “Do you have a good pair of sunglasses?” Not that those are a substitute for a hat, but because you really need a good pair. Seriously. They could save your life.

Back to the hat: We don’t have a good answer. Even if Arizona had a state hat we might not recommend it. We wouldn’t want you to look like you bought a hat just to try to fit in somewhere. That’s probably why there’s so many cowboy hats in … well, never mind.

 

So …  what kind of hat SHOULD I wear in Arizona?

Short answer first, and it’s short because State Forty Eight sells only two kinds of hats: caps and beanies. We have a big variety of the kinds we sell of each, but those are the two major hat groups you’ll find on our site. So let’s start with caps.

What gets called a baseball cap in some parts of the country is a great candidate for State Hat of Arizona. First, because you see so many of them here. (Of course, you see so many of them everywhere, but stick a pin in that for a sec’.) And second, because if you get your cap from State Forty Eight, well, it’s really obvious what state it comes from. If you’re wearing your SFE cap and somebody asks you “What state are you from?”, you don’t even have to reply, “Do I need to draw you a picture?” You can just point at the front of (almost) any of our caps, where your nosy conversation partner will see a picture of our state.

The other reason a baseball-cap style is perfect for the State Hat of Arizona is because of that bill on the front. Now, if you’re new here you may not have noticed yet that we get some spectacular sunsets. The sun also rises, and that’s gorgeous, too. But there are parts of the state, and the Phoenix metro area is an example, in which the roads are laid out north-south and east-west. Driving on the latter anytime around sunrise or sunset is going to make you really appreciate a bill on the front of your cap that you can pull down just over your eyes.

Important note from dermatologists and other smart folks like that on baseball caps: If you spend a lot of time out in the sun, don’t rely on a cap alone to protect you from sun-related skin damage and even cancer. If you’re gonna be out, put sunscreen on the tops of your ears. Really. Helps keep each of your ears in one piece and on the sides of your head where they belong.

 

Can we have a State Beanie instead of a State Hat?

When it comes to hats, the name “beanie” has really been around. Ever seen one of those little close-fitting skull caps with a propeller on them, probably in a cartoon? That was a beanie. Back in the ’50s and ’60s, freshmen at most American colleges had to wear similarly ridiculous little tight-fitting caps (but without propellers) to identify themselves as “fish.”

What most people now call a beanie used to be called, at least in colder states, a stocking cap. Or a sock cap. Pretty obvious why. But now they’re all beanies, and the thing they all seem to have in common is: no bill on the front. As for the beanies we sell at State Forty Eight, they’re all woven, and on a chilly day they’re as warm and welcoming as a sleeping bag in a tent up on the Mogollon Rim in November.

A beanie’s not much for keeping the sun out of your eyes, though, unless you pull it down. And that makes driving risky. Again … sunglasses.

 

So the answer to the question …

… “What hat should I wear in Arizona?” is, of course, any kind you want. Unlike some other states, we’re not going to tell you which hat makes you more a part of this state than any other. The hat you choose becomes the best hat for Arizona, because it’s on an Arizonan. It’s our unique people who represent our state, not their hats.

As you’ve probably figured out by now, if you’ve been cruising our site, we’re kinda proud of that Arizona uniqueness, and so much more. Which is why you’ll find “State Forty Eight” — in words or a picture or both — on every hat we sell.

You from Arizona? Our hats are about you. You pick any dang hat you want.