"It's not a revolution, it's an evolution."
That's how Chris Mundhenk, vice president of marketing and entertainment for the Great Lakes Loons, describes the club's new set of logos and uniforms. The Dodgers' Class A affiliate -- based in Midland, Michigan -- unveiled its new look during a Saturday afternoon "season kickoff" event held at their Dow Diamond home.
The Loons' previous primary logo was relatively simple, featuring a loon smiling wryly as he rested his beak atop the team wordmark. In the new primary logo, the team's titular avian has adopted a more determined looking countenance. The Loon is set against an outdoors backdrop, featuring towering pine trees and twinkling stars.
"People here like to spend a lot of time outdoors in the summer, so for us, Loons baseball represents friends, family and outdoor summertime fun in Michigan," Mundhenk said. "Our primary logo is speaking to that, and the other marks are playful and fun and still give a nod to the unique region where we live."
In 2016, the Loons' 10th season, the team will wear off-white home uniforms featuring the "Loons" name above a swooping gray feather. The road uniforms are highlighted by a cap featuring an interlocking "GL" atop a flying loon; this logo also is featured on an alternate green jersey. But perhaps the most unique aspect of the Loons' new look is the inclusion of both "summer" and "winter" alternate logos. The former is wearing a fishing hat, the latter a plaid cold weather cap (complete with ear flaps).
"The summer loon is a nod to what a lot of people do in this region -- spending time outdoors, going fishing," Mundhenk said. "And we're a northern climate team. Having the winter loon doesn't just signify that but embraces it. A lot of fans are at our games in early April, when we still get snow. These are less-than-ideal conditions, but they're still out there braving the cold with us. We wanted something that signified that, and it gives us some additional marks to utilize in the offseason as well."
The logos were designed by Brandiose, a San Diego-based company that has worked with dozens of Minor League teams over the past decade. According to Mundhenk, discussions with Brandiose designers Casey White and Jason Klein began at the 2014 Winter Meetings; work on the project took place in earnest throughout the 2015 campaign.
"[Brandiose] spent some time in Midland, as well as Bay City and Saginaw," Mundhenk said. "They were trying to learn about the region and the people here, spending time at the ballpark and getting to know the fans and the things that they enjoy about our brand.
"We're very mindful of who we are and what this region is. It's important for us to be consistent, to be able to strengthen that relationship and have a stronger connection to the Michigan outdoor theme."