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Oregon's most popular baby names for 2017 look a lot like those for 2016...and for several years before that

Few things are as delightfully fickle as naming a baby — no matter how much thought we think we put into it. Trends in the popularity of names — or lack thereof — for newborns dip and spike like a roller coaster, leaving even sociologists scratching their heads.

What were the most popular names for babies born in Oregon in 2017?

The Social Security Administration released the list Thursday, highlighting this year's crop and the popularity of names throughout the decades.

It might be safe to say that if you are having a baby in 2018 and want to avoid your child sharing his/her name with several other children in their class you should check the list online — popular names tend to ride a wave. What's in a name?

Emma tops the list Oregon for 2017 — again, gracing the Top 5 charts for several years running. Number 2 through 10 includes Olivia (also topping the charts for several years), Sophia, Charlotte, Evelyn, Harper, Ava, Mia and Abigail. All five were in the Top 10 for Oregon for 2015 as well.

Nationally the Top 5 for girls was Emma, Olivia, Ava, Isabella, Sophia and Mia.

For boys the top name in Oregon was Oliver, also lingering in the Top 10 for several years. Number 2 through 10 includes Liam, Henry, Benjamin, William, Logan, Noah, Wyatt, James, and Samuel. Dropped from the Top 10 since 2015 were Elijah (now No. 11) and Mason (now No. 14).

Nationally the Top 5 in 2017 were Liam, Noah, William, James, and Logan.

The agency began compiling the baby name list in 1997, with names dating back to 1880. At the time of a child's birth, parents supply the name to the agency when applying for a child's Social Security card, thus making Social Security the go-to spot for the most popular baby names.

If you're interesting in giving your baby-to-be an unusual name, but not one off-the-charts weird, name your son Bentley. There were only 47 of those in Oregon last year (but 229 Olivers). Or if it's a girl, name her Lydia; there were only 34 born in 2017.

While the crazy-popular names don't change a lot from year to year, the lesser-used names have more mobility. In 2012 there were Hadleys born in Oregon, making that the No. 88 in the state; in 2017 she didn't even make the Top 100.

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