Catskill region logo contest seeks to create new identity

Mt. Tremper — One lucky lover of the Catskill Mountain region will win a $1,500 prize in August when his or her descriptive tag line is selected by the Catskill Park Resource Foundation for use in an advertising and promotional campaign to attract new and returning visitors to the region.
Florida, the Sunshine State! Pure Michigan! Virginia is for Lovers! It’s Bettah in the Bahamas!

Each of these successful tourism venues has spent millions publicizing these slogans. And it works. Each area has become an important tourism destination and/or markedly increased its business.
The Catskill Park Resource Foundation (CPR), formed to help re-brand the Catskills, will be marshalling resources to mount a $5 million promotional campaign, professionally designed and placed to guarantee the highest possible visibility. But the CPR, recognizing that any slogan must resonate with the general public, decided to reach out to that public to help define the region.

Our image has for too long been labeled with the outmoded “Borscht Belt” tag or the vague term beloved by the metropolitan media: “Upstate.” Where ever that is.

CPR, reluctant to go the usual route and hire an ad agency to dream up tag lines for us and then recruit focus group interviewees for their micro-opinions, has decided instead to appeal to the people of the region.

“We will reach out through social and electronic media outlets to discover the right image and slogan,” said Dean Gitter, a founding board member of the foundation. Gitter said that the contest would be staged in two parts.

“For the next 30 days, anyone who wants to enter can just go to our webpage (www.cprandco.org/Contest) and type in their entry.” He indicated that people can enter the contest as often as they wish and that if there are two or more people entering the same slogan, the first one entered will be the one considered by judges.

On July 16, CPR will compile a list of all suggestions submitted on time and have them reviewed by a judging panel of regional professionals with tourism and/or marketing expertise. The judges will choose the top five slogan entries as finalists and announce them in a press conference by July 27. CPR will then invite residents and visitors, natives and newcomers, old and young, to vote, electronically, for their favorites. The entry with the most unique votes, wins. Unlike many current social media contests, each voter must enter an active e-mail address to vote and may vote just once per e-mail address.

The winning slogan will be announced August 25 at Belleayre Mt. Ski Center. The winner will be presented with a check for $1,500. For more information, got to www.cprandco.org/Contest. For updates, follow us on Facebook or Twitter.