City of Enumclaw unveils logo

The sometimes-rocky effort to choose an official logo for the city of Enumclaw appears to be nearing its conclusion.

The Branding Leadership Team, an ad-hoc group charged with recommending a final design to the City Council, did some final tweaking July 1. Group members now have a design they’re happy with and the design will rest in the hands of the council, which is expected to act on the logo Monday night.

The logo first came to light as just one element of a larger “branding” effort for the city, a series of recommendations by a professional consultant aimed at positioning Enumclaw as a worthy destination for tourists’ dollars. The big picture identifies Enumclaw as an equestrian-friendly community, home to any number of events for the horse crowd. At the heart of the matter is the hoped-for conversion of the Enumclaw Expo Center into a top-notch equestrian facility.

Along the way the logo became something of a lightning-rod issue. The consultant recommended that the logo not be shared until the entire branding plan could be unveiled, a move that sparked two separate actions. First, a rendition of the logo was shared with a limited number of people and the reaction was not universally liked; in particular, some criticized the lack of a mountain in the drawing. The consultant argued that many communities have access to Mount Rainier and that Enumclaw is not unique in its proximity to the dominant landmark.

The original logo consisted of a horse and buggy in front of a barn and silo.

Also, the logo became political fodder when a city councilman alleged that Mayor John Wise violated the intent of the state’s open government provisions be keeping the logo under wraps.

An eventual offshoot of the wrangling was formation of the Branding Leadership Team.

The seven-member group determined that a logo for Enumclaw should include some reference to Mount Rainier. Also, it was determined that inclusion of a horse should wait until Enumclaw can develop an equestrian center – a proposal that carries a price tag well into the millions.

During their July 1 meeting, BLT members tinkered with the design of a barn door and arrived with a design consisting of a barn and silo in the foreground, with the sillouette of the mountain behind. The mountain and words “Enumclaw, Washington” are in olive green with the barn and silo in a shade of red.

Making up the Branding Leadership Team are Wise, councilmembers Liz Reynolds and Rich Elfers, Enumclaw Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Cathy Rigg, Bill DuBray of the city’s Design Review Board, Nancy Free of the Equestrian Advisory Board and Robin Buckingham of the Mount Rainier Independent Business Alliance.