The City of Castlegar recently went through a re-branding exercise. This was undertaken by a steering committee, who ended up with a couple of layouts and tag lines for the logo. The City ended up choosing the playful, “Happily Ever After”. Now I understand that this is marketing speak and designed to play on the fairytale notion of Castle(gar), but my mind has a hard time justifying this type of expense in good or bad times.

Castlegar Words

Cover of "Ever After - A Cinderella Story...
Cover of Ever After - A Cinderella Story

From the comments on the Castlegar Source a few weeks ago when this was announced, it seems that out of the four comments posted, (I know, not a statistically relevant sample by any means!), two comments were positive and two were fairly negative. Can you guess which ones were written by councillors?

The irony for me is that this City has a brand, does a tagline take away from the community and opportunity of this place? We don’t have any castles that I know of – I was thinking perhaps we should trademark the tagline and sell the rights to some German village and it’s Medieval tourism based economy.

Sure, Castlegar is a fun place, and there are decent opportunities here, but does it stand out as a fairytale City?

Other municipalities have used the rebranding process as an opportunity to garner community comments, setting the limits and perhaps even offering a prize to the “best” ones. I honestly haven’t given this much serious thought, but I’d be interested to know if anyone out there can come up with alternative taglines to challenge, “Happily Ever After” for this fair City.


Published by Mike Thomas

Mike Thomas P.Eng. ENV SP, is the author of and Director of Engineering at the City of Revelstoke in the Interior of British Columbia, Canada.

2 replies on “Castlegar Rebranded”

  1. The writing of this post has been an exercise in restraint, and secretly designed to see how restrained the local community can be when it comes to the slippery topic of local government branding.

    Congratulations on holding your tongue – although part of me wishes that you had less restraint cause I’m sure it would humour us all!

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