EagleHerald Staff Writer
MENOMINEE—Menominee County’s logo — or lack thereof — was once again a topic of discussion, Tuesday.
While most governments have a design which can be used on letterheads, vehicle decals and business cards to symbolize the government entity and to represent it in when words are absent, Menominee County lacks this small—yet in many ways, quite big—piece of branding.
Rebranding the county and designing a logo has been discussed before multiple times. Most recently, the Menominee County Economic Development Committee had a full discussion on what a proper logo would entail about a year ago.
The topic of a logo design was brought up again last Tuesday at the Menominee County Board of Commissioners meeting. This time, the context came from a website.
Menominee County had hired Konect to create an online reservation system for county campgrounds and the company needed a logo of some sort for this website. Konect offered to provide a few logo designs for the website and other branding the county may need.
“The biggest things we pulled out of that economic development committee is that we wanted it (the logo) to highlight the natural resource aspects of Menominee County and somehow identify where Menominee County is within the state of Michigan,” Menominee County Administrator Jason Carviou said Tuesday. “I gave those two objectives to the designer and this is what they came back with.
“You want to have enough detail that it (the logo) is unique to Menominee County but you don’t want so much detail that you can make it a large logo or a smaller logo without losing that detail,” he added. “With these logos, you can blow it up to work on a billboard or you can make it small enough to use on a business card.”
Carviou showed four variations of a logo that read “Menominee County Michigan” in a light blue sanserif font. The letter “i” in Menominee is altered between the designs. In one design, the lowercase “i” is dotted with a soaring eagle and on the other designs, the “i” is replaced all together with an image of either a tree, a lighthouse or a deer.
Included in each logo is a map of Upper and Lower Michgan, which wraps around the text.
Carviou said he had sent the logo designs to county employees and asked for their input; the two most popular designs are the logo with the lighthouse and the one with the deer. The tree was universally unpopular among courthouse employees.
“What I’m learning is everyone has their own ideas what the design should look like and everyone has their own improvements on that,” he said. “I would say, ultimately something is better than what we currently have.”
The most popular design with employees is the one that includes iconography of a lighthouse; however, Carviou said he does not feel this is the best image to represent Menominee County.
“I think the county needs to separate itself and get away from the lighthouse because it’s really the City of Menominee’s identifying feature. We only have one lighthouse in the entire county and it’s in the city, so it doesn’t represent the county as a whole.”
The second most popular logo design with county employees is the deer, which Carviou said he personally likes because it showcases a natural resource that Menominee County is known for. It also works well with the reservation website Konect is building. He said he also likes the logo with the eagle because it both signifies the county’s natural resources as well as being a symbol of government.
Commissioner Steve Gromala joked that the eagle could just as likely be a seagull, a common nuisance in Menominee County. He said he liked the tree because it calls back to the county’s historic logging origins.
Several of the commissioners agreed with Carviou that Menominee County should avoid using the lighthouse iconography and said they preferred the eagle design.
“I’ve seen enough lighthouses in my life,” Commissioner Larry Phelps said.
These designs are not necessarily going to be used for a county logo, the county board can choose to use all of them or none of them. Carviou said while a graphic designer with Konect created these logos at no additional cost, a cost may arise if the county has Konect edit the designs too much.
In other business, Carviou also went over Konect’s design for an online reservation website. The website will include a large photograph of the county parks and campgrounds that will rotate between multiple pictures of the county’s choosing. These pictures can be updated at any time.
The website also includes information on the campgrounds, a reservation search feature and a map with the campgrounds’ locations.