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After debuting new logo, Schweitzer faces harsh online criticism

UPDATED: Sat., April 10, 2021

Schweitzer Mountain Resort’s new logo and simplified name.
Schweitzer Mountain Resort’s new logo and simplified name.

Schweitzer (formerly Schweitzer Mountain Resort) debuted a new logo and a simplified name on Wednesday.

Not everyone was pleased.

“Going forward, we’re keeping it simple and shifting from ‘Schweitzer Mountain Resort’ to the much friendlier ‘Schweitzer,’ ” the North Idaho ski resort said in a statement announcing the change.

They resort also debuted a new logo.

“When we examined our logo, which is intended to visually communicate Schweitzer’s unique identity, we realized it wasn’t adequately reflecting who we are today, nor symbolizing the future we aspire to create,” the resort wrote.

The new logo, a green S, intentionally moves away from snow imagery, according to the resort, to reflect the shift “from a primarily winter destination to a winter and summer destination.”

That change didn’t sit well with everyone.

“This is a very bad representation for a such a historically prestigious North Idaho Ski resort,” wrote one Facebook commenter. ” These colors are drab and say absolutely NOTHING about winter or skiing, the design is anything but original.”

Others noted the logos similarity to the Seattle Kraken ice hockey logo, which also features a stylized ‘S’. Many comments complained that the logo looked too corporate. Critiques spiraled from there and included complaints about raised ticket prices and a strict mask policy over the winter due to COVID-19.

All of which prompted CEO and president Tom Chasse to respond publicly Friday after the resort received more than 1,500 comments on social media, plus emails and messages.

“Change is hard to accept, but it is also an inevitable part of life,” he wrote. “Every decision Schweitzer makes – a new lift location, glading cut, hotel built and obviously a new logo – generates a ton of opinions, feedback and ways we could have done it better.”

Chasse said that 15 years ago, when he started working at Schweitzer, they’d just launched the snowflake logo … to great scorn.

“They called it ‘starfish,’ ‘cat butt’ and a whole bunch of other things,” he said. “Just another ski area with a blue snowflake calling itself a mountain resort. But at the time, that logo didn’t have a connection to the place. That connection was created over time, but not from the start.”

As for the similarities to the Seattle Kraken logo, Chasse said Schweitzer had already started the design process when the Kraken unveiled their logo. That’s the unfortunate reality of trying to creatively design an ‘S,’ he said. Schweitzer’s logo is trademarked, he said.

Finally, he addressed the complaint that the mountain has become too corporate or “sold out.”

“We are still one of the few independently owned resorts and plan to keep it that way,” he wrote. “We launched a new logo that we feel connects even closer to our original founders’ vision and we did something most other ski areas haven’t – kicking the snowflake to the curb.”

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