A place to buy gas, a gift shop, a few businesses selling coffee and beer – dusty Chicken was once a thriving mining center, but these days it's a bit of an overrated tourist attraction. The town’s name allegedly originated at a meeting of resident miners in the late 1800s. As the story goes, the men voted to dub their new tent-city ‘Ptarmigan,’ since that chicken-like bird (now the Alaskan state bird) was rampant in the area. Trouble is, no-one could spell it.
In retrospect, the naming was a savvy move. Nowadays, folks flock here for ‘I got laid in Chicken’ caps and similar tat. There's an isolated, end-of-the-world feeling to Chicken that attracts a certain kind of self-imposed exile; we've found said exiles can either be friendly or distinctly chilly when dealing with outsiders.