MALONE-- With just weeks remaining in their tourism and marketing contract with Franklin County, the Regional Office of Sustainable Tourism (ROOST) is putting out a new logo for Malone and Franklin County.
Regional Marketing Manager for Northern Franklin County Phil Hans, who works for ROOST but will start work with the Local Development Corp, on Monday, said the new logo was not just something that was thrown together at the last minute so the agency could meet its contract obligations, but instead took months to create.
“It took about five or six months for us to create this,” said Hans.
In December the contract was awarded to the LDC after ROOST, which had held the contract for five years, did not submit a complete proposal to renew the pact.
It is not known if the LDC will use the logo when it takes over the contract on Feb. 4.
The new logo is circle with the word Malone in the middle, above it is a star, which references Malone’s nickname as “The Star of the North.” White dots scattered throughout the logo are not mistakes but instead Hans says they are stars designed to represent the various communities near Malone. They include Bangor, Bellmont, Bombay, Brainardsville, Brandon, Brushton, Burke, Chateaugay, Constable, Dickinson, Duane, Fort Covington, Moira, Mountain View, Owls Head, Paul Smiths, Waverly, St. Regis Falls and Westville.
The logo also consists of a custom typography based on the original, hand-designed font on the cover of Laura Ingalls Wilder’s book “Farmer Boy.” The book was based on the life of the region’s own Almanzo Wilder, husband of Laura, whose homestead in Burke is still a draw for fans of the “Little House on the Prairie books.”
The type is encased in an oval badge design. Above the typography is a gently rolling mountain silhouette to represent the more mountainous areas of the region. The starry sky represents the dark sky opportunities unique to the Malone area. Below the typography is a graphical representation of agricultural fields and a winding river. This represents the Malone region’s agricultural heritage and the waterways that tie the area together, ROOST said in the release unveiling the design.
Hans says the representations in the logo were driven by residents.
“The idea for this logo did not come from ROOST but it was instead ideas that we got from the community,” said Hans.
Community representatives, elected officials, county representatives, the Malone Chamber of Commerce, and business owners all worked together to help create the logo. County Manager Donna Kissane said she was also at some of the meetings.
“Franklin County owns the logo; this is what we are paying ROOST for,” said Kissane.
She is hopeful that the LDC will use it once they take over the contract on Feb. 4.
“I would think that they are going to use it,” Kissane said. “I would hope that they will but I cannot speak for Jeremy Evans.”
Evans is CEO of the LDC and was not available Thursday, but Russ Kinyon, director of economic development at the county Industrial Development Agency, said it is something corporation board has not talked about yet. The LDC is the financing arm of the IDA; the two share staff and directors.
“We have not discussed it, so I do not know what we are going to do. We would need to talk about it,” said Kinyon.
The county’s tourism promotion efforts are funded primarily through a 5% surcharge levied on the bills for temporary accommodations such as hotel and motel rooms known as an occupancy tax or “bed tax.”
Kissane said in a previous meeting that there is a guarantee of $473,000 in available funding, but part of that comes from a match through state “I Love NY” funds.
Hans said once the LDC does take over the contract, he is hoping they will be using the logo or create something that is similar. After that, he said there could be a series of community events to promote the logo.
“We will be planning some sort of rollout events to promote the logo,” said Hans. “It could be something we do, but I won’t know until I start work on Monday.”