Colorado Springs Pukes It Up


By The Denver Egotist / / The city of Colorado Springs, after forming a mayor initiated “brand task force,” spent $111,000 to develop a new logo and slogan for the city. This is what the group out of Castle Rock, called Stone Mantel, came up with. Horrible design, horrible writing and generic to the bone. A quick search of tourism slogans finds at least 7 other cities with the tag “Live it up.” Apparently, this is what happens when someone in government “knows a guy” who can develop a “brand.” There’s gotta be a more skilled group down there that could have done this thing some justice. Instead, the city is left with one of the most hideous identities we’ve seen in quite a while. Damn you, government.


  1. Josh Mishell November 16, 2011

    I would have done that for
    I would have done that for only $85,000. Sounds like another case of the 2012 Olympics logo to me.

  2. bcad November 16, 2011

    LOL! Reminds me of when I was
    LOL! Reminds me of when I was in college at the University of Northern Colorado, and we were talking about branding. They were trying to rebrand the University’s image, by hiring a new PR team or whatever. The people that came in decked out in UNC gear were automatically rejected, because no one at our school has any school pride. This reminds me of it. People knowing the general idea, but falling flat on their ass and making the town of Co Springs look assbackwards stupid.

  3. adorf November 16, 2011

    Holy shit…$111,000 for
    Holy shit…$111,000 for that? But for a terrible city…I guess who cares. That picture of old people holding the slogan up with old people taking pictures really sums up Co. Springs. At least their skatepark is killer…

  4. Anonymous November 16, 2011

    Ha ha ha ha…oh well..crappy
    Ha ha ha ha…oh well..crappy city…crappy logo

  5. Andy Pudding November 16, 2011

    From the Colorado Springs
    From the Colorado Springs Gazette article on the branding:

    “I think when the other cities in Colorado realize what the tagline is and the brand, they’re going to say, ‘Oh, we should have thought of that,’” Dave Norton, founder of Stone Mantel, said. “It’s going to last a long time.”


  6. blankdeluxe November 16, 2011

    haha, two hours of half ass
    haha, two hours of half ass work for 111k. Sign me up

  7. shadow November 16, 2011

    really! $111,000 for that.
    really! $111,000 for that. what a waste of money

  8. chrisreinhard November 16, 2011

    I fucking love it! Way to go
    I fucking love it! Way to go Colorado Springs and Stone Mantel! It’s good to finally see some solid work coming out of this god-forsaken state.

  9. SuzanneT November 16, 2011

    Once again tons of money are
    Once again tons of money are spent on what really is a marketing campaign, not a brand initiative. It’s like putting new lipstick on a pig!

    A logo and a tagline are not the brand. They are symbols that represent the brand — so, really, what is the brand, Colorado Springs?

    The city continues to not do the due diligence necessary to build their own brand dna – it starts internally, not with a marketing campaign. How will you integrate actions and behaviors, processes and systems, define metrics, and engage the community, businesses, and stakeholders into walking the brand talk?

    It is simple, you don’t go to an ad agency or design firm to define your brand architecture. Can you get your money back?

  10. Anonymous November 16, 2011

    this is GOD awful
    this is GOD awful

  11. Anonymous November 16, 2011

    noah missed the boat on this
    noah missed the boat on this one…

  12. Dill November 16, 2011

    Best quote comes at the one
    Best quote comes at the one minute mark.

    “They’ve left their home, their heart, friends and family to come to Colorado Springs, and made that their home.”

    Sounds like a cult.

  13. Troy DeRose November 16, 2011

    It’s a sad day to be a
    It’s a sad day to be a designer living in Colorado Springs. I would like to take this opportunity to apologize to the world for this atrocity that my city is responsible for. There are some great designers and agencies based in CO Springs that could have done such a better job with this project.

  14. question November 16, 2011

    who designed this thing
    who designed this thing anyway? was it stone mantel specifically, or did they pull a designer in to help out?

  15. @sammy_the_guy November 16, 2011

    I propose, “Jesus Lives
    I propose, “Jesus Lives Here!”

  16. Anonymous November 16, 2011

    Granted the logo and the
    Granted the logo and the lyrics are lame. However, to some extent, they sort of capture why I still live here. It is beautiful here (more so than other decent sized city in Colorado). There are tons of things to do here if you like being active. People here are generally polite and keep to themselves. I am not in any way, shape, or form a conservative and I generally have no problems with the people in the downtown where I live. So, while this video isn’t spectacular by any means and could have been done for much less, it isn’t as bad as you’re making it out to be when you compare it to other tourism videos.

    The Denverites just need to trash COS routinely because in reality there isn’t anything all that special about Denver either. My work has taken me all over the globe to a majority of major cities in the US and abroad and never once have I compared any of the wonderful places I’ve traveled to Denver. I like Denver just fine, but if I were going to move to an actual “city”, Denver wouldn’t be it.

    That said, I go to Denver and travel all over and I’m still always happy to return to COS. As far as I am concerned there are few places on Earth prettier than Colorado Springs from August through October. Get over it, Denver.

  17. Anonymous November 16, 2011

    This type of activity
    This type of activity outrages me. I run many volunteer projects in this community e.g. Onr Hour Volunteers, More Than a Meal, Crossroads USA. We feed the homeless, run clothing drives, help the city clean parks, provide visitation to the dying, elderly, neglected. etc. To spend $110,000.00 on this solgan – one that many other communities have used – is beyond excuse. The mayor should personally reprimanded for such foolishness. The video is sophmoric and the trite. Thisis what happens when foolish politicians rty to do “good things.” We all should learn fromthis mistake – we nevr need to repeat it! The Slogan was already in use in the marketplace and could have been had for free. The video couls have parcelled out the anyone of number universities here in town and their media dept could have assigned this as community service project and we would have had something much more poingant for no fees. Grow up Mayor! You can call me personally to discuss how volunteers do things for free and get better results. Blesings – Mark DeZuba 719-649-0201

  18. Amanda November 16, 2011

    The logo is not great but not
    The logo is not great but not horrible. I think it definitely could have used a little more thought. I live in Colorado Springs and I’m a graphic designer, what upsets me the most is that they hired an agency that was not located in Colorado Springs. There are several larger agencies in town that are fully capable of handling this type of branding. It’s sad that our government did not realize the impact this decision could have had on our own local economy. $111K? Seriously, couldn’t that have been better spent by keeping it with our local economy?

  19. Anonymous November 16, 2011

    Pikes Peak > Downtown Denver.
    Pikes Peak > Downtown Denver. Enough said. It’s so annoying to hear people constantly rip COS apart when they are basing their judgements on what they assume.

    Go visit the city for a change and you actually won’t run into an old, bible-toting conservative. Just cause they’re loud doesn’t mean they’re the majority.

    But if the city did want to change that (incorrect) stereotype, they shouldn’t have made that video, or that logo.

  20. hellomynameisadam November 16, 2011

    WTF is with the arm of the
    WTF is with the arm of the “G.” What is that?

  21. chrisreinhard November 16, 2011

    All these peeps defending CO
    All these peeps defending CO Springs have every right to do so: it’s probably not the bible-thumping freakfest most people in Denver, or wherever, believe it is (at least, not totally). But a misconception about a city doesn’t excuse this kind of “branding” garbage, or the price the city paid for it – and whether you’re from the Springs or not, you shouldn’t be putting in your two cents if you can’t see that.

  22. bcad November 16, 2011

    Any town could have the words
    Any town could have the words “Live It Up” attached to it
    Denver: Live it up
    Greeley: LIve it up
    Baltimore: live it up
    San Francisco: live it up
    Longmont: Live it up


  23. Andy Pudding November 16, 2011

    Oh please, this isn’t a
    Oh please, this isn’t a Denver v. CS argument. Apples v. oranges. I’m just supremely disappointed that a gorgeous city of 600K+ people blew a lot of cash on an awful piece of branding.

    The “Live it Up” with the swoosh under it looks like Provo, Utah, 1983.

  24. bcad November 16, 2011

    The video captures the
    The video captures the embodiment of the town, and the heart and soul it has. However, LIVE IT UP was in poor taste…as was people shouting it over and over.

  25. Eric A. November 16, 2011

    I guess its better than:
    I guess its better than: Colorado Springs: not as cool as Boulder, Denver, Aspen or Vail, but we have mountains too!

  26. Anonymous November 16, 2011

    Denver doesn’t have
    Denver doesn’t have mountains.

  27. Dan November 16, 2011

    I live in CS and can you tell
    I live in CS and can you tell you that what it needs is a cross and a pair of semi-automatic rifles.

  28. Dill November 16, 2011

    Come on. It’s like the Bank
    Come on. It’s like the Bank of America logo and the Super Bowl XLIII logo has a distressed baby logo with people having a three legged race on it.

    @hellomynameisadam. That green arm represents $15,000 of the $111,000.

  29. Hardoyle November 16, 2011

    As someone who grew up down
    As someone who grew up down there in the Springs, what pisses me off is the missed opportunity to change perception. The fact that many of you have a particularly unimpressive take on a place that in many ways is just as “Colorado” as Boulder etc is proof positive that they not only wasted 100k, but will now have to stand behind something that will only affirm what people already thought by default. Pretty pathetic.

  30. Edain November 16, 2011

    Just to correct a couple of
    Just to correct a couple of comments, the city did NOT pay for this trash — the CS Economic Development Corp. did. As far as I’m concerned, the EDC is evil through and through, trying to get more multinational corporations to relocate here so they can rape the environment (ironic,huh? since the environment is the one thing CS has going for it!). Maybe the decision-makers for multinational corps are stupid enough to fall for this garbage!

  31. undone November 16, 2011

    what is incredibly upsetting
    what is incredibly upsetting is that this exercise and its chosen delivery transcend the creative community in Colorado Springs. it instantly defines the region as a bunch of dated, second-rate thinkers who simply can’t do, or know, any better.

    it’s maddening because there are a few – very skilled, talented, yet unsung groups down here . . . sheesh!

  32. turd sandwich November 16, 2011

    This most likely a design by
    This most likely a design by committee situation but a turd sandwich all the way none the less and has nothing to do with who is better as a city. I live in and love Denver, but there are some sweet spots in the Springs and it was not long ago that it was city of the year in Outside.

    The logo however… Looks like a clip art image along with some poorly kerned type and poor font selection with a bad rendition of the Nike logo below it. Whoever excepted it, be it the city or the development corp should be shot. Wait until they realize it’s two guys holding hands and then wait and see what happens.

  33. Anonymous November 16, 2011

    someone should help colorado
    someone should help colorado springs suck less, daily.

  34. Adam November 16, 2011

    What everyone else said too
    What everyone else said too about it being horrible and uninspired… but this goes to show you how much our horrible mayor cares about the city. I can name 10 quality design firms in the Colorado Springs city limits but this guy even outsources this…

  35. Anonymous November 16, 2011

    “…began in May and involved
    “…began in May and involved hundreds of people and organizations…” They weren’t paid enough! Therapy is really expensive.

  36. Greta Schmidt November 17, 2011

    get on board people — help us
    get on board people — help us out:

  37. FreddyRumsen November 17, 2011

    I live in Boulder but travel
    I live in Boulder but travel down to the Springs quite a bit. I’ve always been pleasantly surprised by C-Springs. Great mountain biking close by, wonderful restaurants, excellent golf, my favorite pizza joint in Colorado – Pizzeria Rustica – and no one has yet tried to “save” me.

    That said, this was $111,000 worth of shit. Nothing says “vibrant” like a video featuring a bunch of senior citizens.

  38. tall city November 17, 2011

    Colorado Springs : If You
    Colorado Springs : If You Don’t Kill You, We Will!

  39. Anonymous November 17, 2011

    Greta, just took a look at
    Greta, just took a look at the Facebook page. I think encouraging crowd sourcing is the wrong idea. Did anyone see that?!

  40. Anonymous November 17, 2011

    “WTF is with the arm of the
    “WTF is with the arm of the G. What is that?”

    An arrow, indicating a community moving further to the right. It’s supposed to be subtle I think.

  41. Cat November 17, 2011

    Isn’t the Broadmoor in
    Isn’t the Broadmoor in Csprings.

  42. Greta Schmidt November 17, 2011

    I’m not saying that
    I’m not saying that crowdsourcing is the right idea. In fact, if you read further on their facebook page, I specifically mention that the competition is a bad idea. With that said, there’s really no other way to protest this rebrand without counting the number of folks who want to do something about it.

  43. Richard November 17, 2011

    With all the POT being sold
    With all the POT being sold in the Springs the logo should be LIGHT IT UP not LIVE IT UP !!!!

  44. Anonymous November 17, 2011

    Gotta love an exclamation
    Gotta love an exclamation point in the tagline. Really drives the point home.

  45. Anonymous November 17, 2011

    For a state that has some of
    For a state that has some of the best videographers in the world, this video is a mess. Bad lighting, overexposed shots, horrible composition, loose editing (those awkward pauses between each “Live It Up!”), a collection of some the most unattractive people I’ve ever seen in a marketing campaign, sound all over the place, the music underneath tended to overpower the interviews…. I could go on. The sad thing is, this could have been an awesome piece at just the fraction of the cost to the city…. Very sad that they were taken to the cleaners.

  46. Anonymous November 17, 2011

    The “arrow” on the G nicely
    The “arrow” on the G nicely reflects the green areas in the crotches of the two men holding hands. Subtle touch.

  47. Anonymous November 18, 2011

    The slogan was supposed to
    The slogan was supposed to be, “Any press is good press”.

  48. Anonymous November 18, 2011

    How original. Seriously, that
    How original. Seriously, that is ridiculous! It’s stuff like that makes people not trust actual designers, and make people do things themselves after seeing branding like this.

    Thanks alot.

  49. Anonymous November 18, 2011

    I would have rather voted on
    I would have rather voted on kids designs and given the schools the money. You losers are teaching our future to be Socially and Economically RETARDED.

  50. HOLY HIDDEN November 19, 2011

    HAHAHA! Either I’m crazy, or
    HAHAHA! Either I’m crazy, or they’ve made the video “private” for now. It has also been removed from the http://www.visitcos/liveitup website.

  51. Anonymous December 2, 2011

    Just goes to show what a
    Just goes to show what a Hillbilly town this is …. This HAS to be done by someone who is ex-military. It’s the only way you can get work down here.

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