Out with the new and keep the old.
That was the bottom line Tuesday for the Manteca City Council when they rejected four new municipal logo designs to keep the city seal that has graced everything from municipal vehicles and city workers’ shirts to official letterheads for a half a century.
The unanimous vote — with Councilman Jose Nuño absent — means the city seal stamped on municipal garbage and recycling carts won’t be dumped for one of four modern designs that council members found wanting.
A contest to come up with possible replacements for the city logo was embraced by the previous council that backed a staff suggestion to modernize the city’s “brand.”
In voting via the city’s website in May, nearly 2,000 people weighed in on the designs they preferred that included keeping the existing seal. The current logo finished a strong second with 503 votes, just 26 votes behind the top preferred design of four new options.
Cantu disliked fonts and other aspects of the four new designs. He noted while the word “Manteca” stood out, it made it difficult to see other wording such as “The Family City”.
“I think it is fine the way it is,” Cantu said.
Councilman Gary Singh said he wouldn’t rebrand the city while Councilman David Breitenbucher favored “keeping it” the way it is.
“It has a house. It has a church. It says it all,” Councilwoman Debby Moorhead said of the city’s current logo.
She also liked the vibrant red, white and blue colors of the city seal as opposed to burgundy, muted blue and gray incorporated into the four proposed alternatives.
“I like the red, white, and blue,” Moorhead said. “We’re a patriotic city.”
The current logo is in the traditional circle of a city seal using vibrant red and blue against a white background. It encompasses the city motto “The Family City” as well as the date of incorporation of May 28, 1918 along with the wording “City of Manteca, California.” The center of the seal includes the name “Manteca” again along with two objects — a house with a tree behind it and what appears to be a larger house next to it.
If you look closer at the larger “house” you will notice two windows shaped as if they were stained glass windows on a church. That’s because the original seal had a church with a steeple and cross. The church was neutered about 20 years ago when the — without public fanfare — removed the steeple with a cross presumably to avoid the city being accused of promoting religion.
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