Discussion held about U.S. Hwy 10 sign
By Barbie Porter
For several months the city of Frazee has been working on a branding effort that recognizes the past while accentuating the future.
During the monthly council meeting on Monday, Aug. 16, those in attendance were given the first glimpse of the work that has been done behind the scenes.
There were two elements to the presentation. One included the city brand, which will be seen on letter heads, banners, city-owned vehicles, shirts and so forth. Potentially, the symbols could also be used along the trail to help visitors identify where services are located.
The other discussion included the billboard along U.S. Highway 10 between Perham and Frazee.
The effort to give the city a new brand was made possible by funds allotted to the city through a grant. A Rose Lake resident was hired and brought in artists to create several options. Initially, the options were reviewed by a panel consisting of members of community groups and children. The panel narrowed the choices down to three, which were then presented at the council meeting.
For the city logo, the council agreed the one with a color-coded key was the most appealing to them. The color of each rectangle had an identifiable drawing inside of it representing houses, trails and more.
The logo concept is geared to making visitors and those living in neighboring cities aware of the new amenities scheduled to come to Frazee in 2022, such as the Heartland Trail extension, new beach house and commercial building. Eventually, the Wannigan Regional Park may also be an attraction, in addition to the World’s Largest Turkey.
Presenters and City Administrator Jordin Roberts emphasized Turkey Tom will remain part of the city’s attractions, but the time had come to share the other exciting and new things happening in the city.
Once the logo is finalized, it will become city property in perpetuity.
Billboard discussion held
For the billboard along U.S. Highway 10, it was emphasized the town mascot, Turkey Tom was not going anywhere. He will be included on the sign. Instead of the turkey being the entire sign, Tom would potentially be shifted to one side of the billboard. It was explained the turkey would still be very large, standing 9-to-10 feet tall, and provide a unique shape to the billboard with his feathers breaking the typical rectangle look. The rectangular part of the billboard would have “Frazee” on it.
Councilman Mark Flemmer suggested adding the words Welcome to in front of Frazee, or Welcome home to Frazee.
Residents attending the meeting noted how unique the shape of the current billboard is, and recommended the same concept be used when it is replaced. Some said the billboard has become a tourist attraction that people take a picture by. Residents were also adamant about keeping the turkey as the focal point of the billboard.
One resident noted many towns have trails and similar recreational opportunities in the area, but only Frazee has the World’s Largest Turkey. She added the turkey pulls people off of the highway.
All seemed to agree in one change to the billboard—including a highway exit number to take tourists to the Big Turkey Tom.
A suggestion was made to locate another sign at Big Turkey Tom telling people about amenities in town. In addition to businesses, the moose and the in-progress mural could be a draw, as well as the hiking and soon-to-be built Heartland Trail extension. The bridge over a bridge was also mentioned as being a unique asset to Frazee, as well as its scenic parks.
A resident asked how the Frazee Economic Development Authority came to own the sign along the highway. It was previously owned by the community club.
Flemmer, who was community club president when it was taken over by the EDA, said the sign is in disrepair, as is the structure holding it up. The community club tried to fundraise the upwards of $18,000 to replace it, but the purse strings were tight. Instead of getting rid of it, the club asked if the EDA would be interested in taking it over and replacing it. The EDA accepted.
The Frazee sign between Frazee and Detroit Lakes is still owned by the Frazee Area Community Club.
The council approved moving forward with the logo and sign, meaning revisions would be made and presented for final approval. It was noted the grant funding must be spent by December.