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Duluth Northwoods League concept


mcrosby
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Been tinkering with some ideas for the Northwoods League team in Duluth, but I'm struggling to make any decisions. I'm not too fond of the Huskies name, mostly because it's just a bit too boring for a collegiate summer league. I'm trying to decide a few things: 

 

Locale name: 

  • Duluth
  • Duluth-Superior
  • Twin Ports

 

Nickname:

  • Huskies
  • Lakers
  • Freighters
  • 1000-Footers
  • Porters
  • Twins
  • Pressies
  • Mishipeshus (maybe appropriating)
  • Sharks is already taken
  • OTHER

 

I've started with a new Old English style D, replacing the usual internal strokes with a representation of Duluth's famous Aerial Lift Bridge.  Let me know what you think, which locale and which nickname you prefer. I reached out to the club to see if they were interested in working together and got shut down pretty quick, so I'd love to create something really fantastic because I'm petty and want to show 'em what they're missing out on.  
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Right now the bridge's blaring geometricness (?) feels a bit jarring when compared to the organic D. I might suggest trying to do the bridge more subtlely in negative space. Especially if you set the D in white, it might fit well in between a more traditional solid crossbar and the top of the D.

I'd also ask if there are other ways to differentiate it further from Detroit, regardless of whether or not this is a Tigers affiliate.

 

As for the name, I like your Freighters idea but maybe not with an old-English style (unless it's a modernized version of blackletter). Lakers or something to do with local animals might do better with old English, but honestly Huskies is fine as long as it gets more local flair like you're doing! Also, what do you mean by Pressies?

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Unless you want to resurrect the old Duluth-Superior Dukes brand from the original Northern League, I say stick to Huskies.  I feel like this trend of Northwoods League teams chasing modern MiLB naming conventions has really taken away from the charm the league developed organically when it makes perfect sense for teams in this league to have "northwoodsy" mascots (Skunks, Honkers, Woodchucks, Moondogs, Bullfrogs, etc.). Huskies fits right in with that theme, and they're one of the longest tenured summer league teams in America.  I say embrace it.

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2 hours ago, NicDB said:

Unless you want to resurrect the old Duluth-Superior Dukes brand from the original Northern League, I say stick to Huskies.  I feel like this trend of Northwoods League teams chasing modern MiLB naming conventions has really taken away from the charm the league developed organically when it makes perfect sense for teams in this league to have "northwoodsy" mascots (Skunks, Honkers, Woodchucks, Moondogs, Bullfrogs, etc.). Huskies fits right in with that theme, and they're one of the longest tenured summer league teams in America.  I say embrace it.


No worries, I'd like to stick with something appropriate to the area without getting into the Trash Pandas/Yard Goats/etc realm. Huskies just doesn't do it for me, and their logo is far too similar to St. Cloud State. I'm open to other local flora/fauna. I might try out a concept for Dubuque Mudpuppies, Manitowoc Skunks, Green Bay Bullfrogs, etc. Great summer collegiate names gone too soon, especially in the case of Green Bay. Booyah should have been a one-game identity at most. 

 

3 hours ago, vtgco said:

Right now the bridge's blaring geometricness (?) feels a bit jarring when compared to the organic D. I might suggest trying to do the bridge more subtlely in negative space. Especially if you set the D in white, it might fit well in between a more traditional solid crossbar and the top of the D.

I'd also ask if there are other ways to differentiate it further from Detroit, regardless of whether or not this is a Tigers affiliate.

 

As for the name, I like your Freighters idea but maybe not with an old-English style (unless it's a modernized version of blackletter). Lakers or something to do with local animals might do better with old English, but honestly Huskies is fine as long as it gets more local flair like you're doing! Also, what do you mean by Pressies?

 

The D is just where I'm at now, and I'm in no way married to it. I just wanted to post something to get the ball rolling. 

Pressie is a Lake Superior cryptid. 

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I think the Huskies name works well considering it ties into the John Beargrease Sled Dog Marathon that starts in Duluth. Maybe try to make the name slightly more unique but lean into that history? Or something with Marathons in general with Duluth having the Grandma's Marathon annually. Could also get really minor league-y and tie in food. Theres a cornmeal based food called "mush" that originated in Eastern Europe that got big in the midwest, and couple that with sled dog racers stereotypically calling out "mush" to their team. 

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Just now, Norskie said:

I think the Huskies name works well considering it ties into the John Beargrease Sled Dog Marathon that starts in Duluth. Maybe try to make the name slightly more unique but lean into that history? Or something with Marathons in general with Duluth having the Grandma's Marathon annually. Could also get really minor league-y and tie in food. Theres a cornmeal based food called "mush" that originated in Eastern Europe that got big in the midwest, and couple that with sled dog racers stereotypically calling out "mush" to their team. 

"Mush" is definitely a horrible name for a team though haha

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I would definitely go with Duluth only as the locale name. I mean you could go out even farther though, and use “The North Shore” as the locale name. That could lead to some fun branding as well. 
 

The name Zeniths could also work, as Duluth is known as the Zenith City. 
 

You could use Captains for the shipping industry, or something like Skippers, etc. 


Duluth (or North Shore) Fighting Walleye

Duluth Iron Men for the Iron Ore processing history

Duluth Trappers 

Duluth Voyageurs 

Duluth Lumberjacks 

Alternatively Duluth Lumber Kings 

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I just came up with Duluth Malamutes. It's an animal similar to the husky and still ties into dog sledding, but avoids your concerns with stepping on St. Cloud's toes.

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 The old English D calls for something old-timey in my opinion. 

I wouldn't mind resurrecting the Duluth-Superior Dukes, but I also came here to say Zeniths would be great. Otherwise, I'd focus on more industrial/maritime monikers if you're using the bridge imagery. Here are some less conventional names I thought of:

Longshoremen

Ore Punchers (name of the workers who would load the ore from the train cars into the docks; may be a little too Brandiose)

Whalebacks (name of the old ships used for hauling ore) 

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I like the Duluth Zeniths over the rest of them. Twin Ports Zeniths sounds kind of weird to me. Zenith City (Twins maybe?) doesn't sound to bad to begin with but  it begins to dip into Brandiose style with the name. One name I've always seemed to use for some fictional baseball leagues I've created is the Duluth Superiors. Always a funny name to me. Just thought I'd toss my hat into the ring on that.

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I’d stick with the Duluth Zeniths. It at least makes it feel like a zenith is a physical thing then 😄

 

I do agree that anything with Zenith City ____ does sound a little too Brandiose. Zenith City Superiors rolls off the tongue a little though. 

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I too would just go with Duluth Zeniths. Like others have said, Zenith City gives off too much of a Brandiose vibe.

If you want to try a Zenith City identity, might I suggest the Zenith City Salties? It refers to a seagoing ship going through the freshwater Great Lakes, and it's always a source of local excitement when the first saltie of the year comes into port. Plus, the full nickname for Duluth as coined in the 19th century was "Zenith City of the Unsalted Seas", so you can play off of that a bit!

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Twin Ports Salties - I like the idea of a place name that speaks to the history of  Duluth and Superior as port cities in combination with a locally relevant, maritime-themed nickname.

Zenith City Excelsiors - A name that's meant to evoke vintage baseball team identities of the late 1800s and early 1900s... and does so while combining words (zenith - "the highest point in the heavens"; excelsior - "lofty", "ever upward") that speak to attaining new heights of performance on the diamond. I could see a Mudville Nine-like logo package being adopted in conjunction with this identity.    

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