By Starrla Cray
In the 1970s and ‘80s, more girls in Minnesota were named “Jennifer” than any other name, and “Michael” and “Jason” were big for boys.
Trends have changed, and now, those names don’t even make the top 10 list.
This year, “Sophia” was the most popular baby girl name in the US, and “Jackson” was the most commonly chosen boy name.
Those names were repeat winners from 2013, with “Sophia” in the top five since 2009.
Hutchinson Health BirthCare Center Manager Teri Smith said that of the hospital’s 280 deliveries in 2014, she’s definitely seen some Sophias and Jacksons.
She also noticed traditional names like Ezra, Christian, and Ruth being chosen.
“Many of the older names are coming back,” she said.
Several factors go into baby name selection.
“Sometimes it’s a family name, and sometimes they just like it,” Smith said. “A lot of it comes from TV.”
Different names are popular in different parts of the world.
“Mohammed,” for example, topped the list for boys in the United Kingdom this year, while in New York City, “Jayden” has been the most picked boy’s name for five years. (Sophia was still number one for girls in both the UK and NYC.)
Locally, Smith said it seems more parents are opting for traditional names than when she first became Hutchinson’s BirthCare center manager in 2000.
“Names of cars are also kind of showing up,” she added.
According to Parenting magazine, a few vehicle-inspired names are Lexus, Kia, Mercedes, Chevy, Lincoln, Bentley, and Alantra, among others.
Names sometimes trend with seasons, as well.
“We had a couple Noelles one in October and one in December,” Smith said.
Other seasonal name examples might be Nicholas, Summer, September, Autumn, May, August, or April.
For parents looking for a touch of uniqueness, names derived from foreign languages offer plenty of options like Calliope, Freya, Carwyn, Amaya, Safia, Kazi, and Zelia.
Top baby names of 2014
For the fifth year in a row, “Sophia” is the most popular name for a baby girl nationwide. For boys, “Jackson” topped the list again after winning in 2013. Here are the top 10 names, compiled by BabyCenter: