The 100 Greatest Things about America 2020

Credit: Associated Press and Getty Images

Happy Fourth of July everyone!

Along with reveling and reflecting this holiday weekend, we’re probably doing some grousing too. Yet even with all the pain and disruption this year, it’s easy to overlook how much we have to celebrate in America.

Back on July 4, 2010 when I was editor of Fortune, we put together a list of the 100 Greatest Things about America. Pretty much anything could be on the list — national parks, TV shows, favorite foods — subject to just one rule. People could be included, of course, but we decided only the living. (Ditto for dogs, cats, etc.) A group of us brainstormed and in short order, we had our 100. In fact we came up with many more than that. No worries, we could and did create another list the following year, (which led to another rule, no repeats.) So, we listed 100 more great things about America in 2011, and then again in 2012, 2013 and 2014, until I decamped to Yahoo pastures.

Now after a six year hiatus, it seems especially fitting this year to remind ourselves about America’s positive side. Same rules apply: Only the living and no repeats from previous lists. 

One measure of our country’s greatness: Even with 500 items already identified, it was pretty easy to come up with 100 more. 

(NB: A few people from previous lists have passed away over the years. Also picks from older lists may have not “aged well,” as they say, but we aren’t going to edit previous years’ lists.)

Here then, without further ado and in no particular order, (no judging), are Yahoo Finance’s 100 Greatest Things about America 2020. 

100 Greatest Things about America 

1. Voting 

2. Poll workers

3. Dwayne Johnson 

4. Triple Berry Pie  

5. Water parks 

6. “Friday Night Lights” (the book, the movie, and the show) 

7. Our flag

8. “Shark Tank” 

9. Ava Duvernay

10. Neil Diamond singing “Coming to America”

11. Eddie Murphy starring in “Coming to America”

12. Frontline workers  

13. Hip hop 

14. Meryl Streep

15. Tom Hanks 

16. Southern accents 

17. Brooklyn accents 

18. Charleston Chews

19. Roadside diners 

20. Sandra Oh

21. “Hamilton,” the musical (and the book too!) 

22. Fireball

23.  Black Lives Matter 

24. The Vietnam Veterans Memorial 

25. Second-line parades in New Orleans 

26. Reed Hastings 

27. Deviled eggs 

28. Popeye’s Chicken Sandwich 

29. Whoopi Goldberg

30. Plant nurseries 

31. Queer Eye’s Fab Five

32. Kellyanne, George and Claudia Conway

33. Banana bread 

34. White Claw and the spiked seltzer trend 

35. Matthew McConaughey

36. Pennsylvania sweet corn 

37. Speakeasies  

38. C-SPAN 

39. Elmo and Elmo’s dad 

40. “The Office” 

41. Promposals

42. Tax refunds 

43. Dude with a sign meme page 

44. Block parties

45. Mike Trout

46. First Black Bachelor 

47. Peloton 

48. Innovation 

49. Potlucks 

50. Spike Lee

51. John Roberts

52. Kentucky bourbon 

53. Mirror 

54. Ozark

55. Spider-Man 

56. The McElroy Family 

57. Laverne Cox

58. New Jersey’s official Twitter page 

59. Landscape Arch at Arches National Park 

60. Pacific Crest Trail 

61. Alcohol to-go 

62. Lobster rolls

63. The Pumpkin Spice Latte  

64. Sarah Cooper 

65. “Succession” 

66. Megan Rapinoe 

67. Strand Book Store 

68. Live video messaging services (Zoom, Webex, Google Hangout, Microsoft Teams, Blue Jeans) 

69. Watermelon

70. Americana music

71. Amazon Prime 

72. Etsy 

73. Disney+ 

74. Farmer’s markets  

75. Larry David 

76. “Love Is Blind” 

77. Guys still “selling” CDs in tourist hotspots 

78. The Central Park Dance Skaters in NYC 

79. Supper clubs 

80. Acai Bowls 

81. Good pizza 

82. Allen’s Coffee Brandy

83. “The Sopranos”

84. Vermont’s Mad River Glen ski cooperative 

85. Beanie Babies 

86. “Tiger King” 

87. Stephen King 

88. Regina King

89. Tater Tot Hotdish 

90. Podcasts 

91. Impossible and Beyond burgers 

92. Same-sex marriage 

93. Mad Magazine

94. Razor clams

95. Mac and cheese and Country “gravy” 

96. Parents dancing with their kids on TikTok 

97. Cities banning (or charging) for the use of plastic bags and plastic straws 

98. Best Buy 

99. Ad boycotts

100. Jhumpa Lahiri

Contributors: Dan Roberts, Tracey Marx Bernstein, Rick Newman, Olivia Cross, Adriana Belmonte, Brian Sozzi, Amanda Fung, Andy Hoffman, Julia La Roche, Stephanie Asymkos, Mckenzie Stratigopoulos, Hannah Smart

And here is the 2014 list:

1. The Kennedys

2. Superman

3. Mardi Gras in New Orleans

4. Serena and Venus Williams

5. Roller Rinks

To see the entire list, click here to go to Fortune.com

The 2013 list:

1. Comebacks

2. Wayfarer Sunglasses

3. Moxie

4. Reality TV

5. Annual Presidential Turkey Pardon

6. Cracker Jack

7. Pixar

8. The rule of law

9. Tupperware

10. Open source / free software movement

11. Las Vegas strip

12. North Face fleece

13. Beyonce 

14. The liberty bell

15. Wisconsin Cheeseheads

16. Maryland Crab Cakes

17. Rap crews

18. Garfield

19. Niagara Falls

20. Drive-thrus

21. Betty White

22. Steve Carell as Michael Scott

23. Air Conditioning

24. Fast and Furious Franchise

25. Mel Brooks

26. Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade

27. The Amish

28. Billy Joel

29. Harlem Shake

30. Muhammad Ali

31. The Price is Right

32. Mall of America

33. The Wizard of Oz

34. Fallingwater House

35. Chicken and Waffles

36. OK Cupid/Online dating

37. The Federal Reserve

38. Stan Lee/Marvel

39. Buffalo Wings

40.  Cotton Candy

41. Selfies

42. Long Island Ice Tea

43. The Coen Brothers

44. Post-Its

45. Little League

46. The Jersey Shore Boardwalk

47. Beer Pong

48. Doritos Locos Tacos

49. Southern Hospitality

50. New York Times Crossword

51. Fenway Park

52. Boston Marathon

53. National Spelling Bee

54. Oregon Trail

55. Sweet Caroline

56. Heinz

57. See’s Candies

58. The Mannings

59. The Big Mac

60. Baseball Caps

61. Cape Cod

62. Girl Scouts

63. Corn Dogs

64. Buy one, get one free

65. FroYo

66. YOLO

67. Supermarkets

68. Typewriter

69. Transcontinental Railroad

70. Hoodsie Cup

71. Extreme Couponing

72. Coney Island

73. Cupcakes

74. The Cola Wars

75. Derby Day

76. Joyce DiDonato

77. Free to Be You and Me

78. Marshmallow Fluff

79. Seventh-Inning Stretch

80. The Sousaphone

81. Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating Contest

82. Roomba

83. Bluegrass Music

84. One-click buying

85. Puppy Bowl

86. The cronut

87. Transformers

88. The electric slide

89. Converse All Stars (Chuck Taylor)

90. Robert Caro

91. Pecan Pie

92. Free public schools

93. Bluth’s Original Frozen Banana Stand

94. Victoria’s Secret

95. Game of Thrones

96. Zombie Movies

97. Maya Angelou

98. 40 Watt Club

99. U.S. Peace Corps

100. The St. Louis Arch

The 2012 list:

1. Resilience

2. Title IX

3. The Ford assembly line

4. Batman

5. Bald eagle

To see the entire list, click here to go to CNN.com

The 2011 list:

1. Opportunity

2. The Interstate Highway System

3. The Sears Tower

4. Walmart Employees in Joplin, Mo.

5. Navy Seals

6. ESPN

7. FedEx

8. Steve Jobs

9. Whole Foods

10. Microsoft Word

11. Ford F-150

12. The Rockefeller Family

13. Caterpillar

14. Detroit

15. The Kindle

16. Duct Tape

17. The Bill of Rights

18. The Wall Street Bull

19. Carlos Santana

20. Pappy Van Winkle Bourbon

21. LinkedIn

22. Colin Powell

23. Bill and Melinda Gates

24. GEICO Commercials

25. The Mississippi River

26. Ben & Jerry’s

27. Bose noise-cancelling headphones

28. Self-stick stamps

29. The Boeing 747

30. Warren Buffett

31. Summer Friday hours

32. Poland Spring

33. Lebron James

34. GPS

35. Dallas Deal Websites

36. Friday Night Lights

37. Budweiser beer

38. “American Pie” by Don McLean

39. Jay-Z

40. Louisville Slugger Bats

41. Kevin Spacey voicing Honda commercials

42. Zappos

43. Oscar Mayer hot dogs

44. SEC Football

45. TMZ

46. Music Festivals

47. Glee 

48. Hank Aaron

49. James Taylor

50. Tom Brady

51. NASCAR

52. The Great Gatsby

53. Gatorade

54. Sandusky, Ohio

55. Times Square

56. Aretha Franklin

57. Independent Bookstores

58. 60 Minutes

59. Clif Bars

60. Seinfeld

61. Diet Coke

62. Gmail

63. The Grand Canyon

64. Men and Women serving in the U.S. Armed Forces

65. Clint Eastwood

66. E-Z Pass

67. Jonathan Franzen

68. Windex

69. Michelle Obama

70. Gibson les Paul

71. Morton Salt

72. The Kardashians

73. Jeff Bridges

74. Nike 

75. Prom

76. Diners

77. Old Spice

78. Disneyland/Disneyworld

79. Philly Cheesesteaks

80. Xerox PARC

81. Tina Fey

82. Blogging

83. Politicians who tweet

84. The Gulfstream G650

85. Coppertone Sunblock

86. Food labeling requirements

87. Drive-in Movies

88. Exxon Mobil

89. Sesame Street

90. Starbucks

91. Brian Williams

92. Mark Zuckerberg

93. Vineyard Vines, Ralph Lauren, J. Mclaughlin

94. Sully Sullenberger

95. Steven Spielberg

96. Girl Scout Cookies

97. Subway

98. Jeopardy!

99. The Pulitzer Prize

100. National Lampoon’s Vacation

The 2010 list:

1. The Internet

2. The Constitution and the Bill of Rights

3. Baseball

4. Mount Rushmore

5. Food in New Orleans

6. Rock and Roll

7. Hawaii

8. iPod, iPad, and everything Apple

9. Barbecue

10. Ford Mustang

11. Wikipedia

12. Buffalo

13. Slam Dunks

14. Broadway

15. Bluebirds

16. Google

17. Mark Twain

18. The national anthem

19. Iced Drinks

20. Beaches

21. Madison Square Garden

22. Delivery Pizza

23. The Grateful Dead

24. YouTube

25. The Super Bowl

26. Fishing

27. Monopoly

28. The Big Apple Circus

29. M&Ms

30. Facebook

31. Thanksgiving

32. Pickup Trucks

33. The Simpsons

34. Oprah Winfrey

35. Frisbees

36. Mad Men

37. New York/Boston sports rivalries

38. MRI Machine

39. Patagonia

40. Archie Comics

41.The Golden Gate Bridge

42. Jazz 

43. Fantasy Football

44. Smores

45. Trader Joes

46. The 4th of July

47. Harley Davidson

48. March Madness

49. Scrabble

50. Kegs

51. Slip n’ Slide

52. Ice Cream

53. Yellowstone National Park

54. Oreos

55. Edward R. Murrow

56. Restaurant Week

57. Washington D.C. Monuments at Night

58. Bugs Bunny

59. Etch a Sketch

60. Coca Cola

61. Flip Flops

62. Vegas Weddings

63. Napa Wine

64. Willie Nelson

65. eBay

66. Blueberries

67. The Rockets

68. Charles Barkley

69. Blue Jeans

70. County Fairs

71.The Oscars

72. Veterans

73. Steak Houses

74. The Tiffanys Box

75. Sports Mascots

76. The Great Lakes

77. Salt Water Taffy

78. Roller Coasters

79. HBO

80. The Everglades

81. Bonnie and Clyde

82. Chewing Gum

83. The light bulb

84. Religious freedom

85. Bagels

86. Judd Apatow films

87. The billboard 100

88. Chipotle

89. Dalmatians on fire trucks

90. Disney Movies

91. New Year’s Eve

92. Elvis Presley

93. Cowboys

94. Turducken

95. Netflix

96. Spring Break

97. Escalators

98. Stand-up Comedy

99. Redwood Trees

100. Bendy Straws

101. Charlie Brown

Andy Serwer is editor-in-chief of Yahoo Finance. Follow him on Twitter: @serwer.

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