The City of Hermiston, and the Hermiston Futures Task Force, engaged in extensive community conversations beginning in 2011, and one of the top priorities gleaned from those conversations was a desire by the community to establish and promote a strong community identity. The concept of "Hermiston: you can GROW here" was born, but received little community-wide support. The City engaged Focal Point Marketing in 2015 to assess the community's perceptions of the branding concept, and several major points came out of that work A) people felt that due to the timing of recent legalization of recreational marijuana in Oregon, the concept carried a negative connotation, B) there was very strong support for incorporating watermelons somehow in to any community identity, C) due to such strong opinions regarding the "you can GROW here" concept, Focal Point recommended abandoning the concept entirely.
The Futures Task Force's Community Identity and Promotion sub-committee is therefore being re-convened, with the addition of 10 new community members. The purpose for the group will be to work with the City and Focal Point Marketing to develop new concepts and test them with the community. Continue to watch this page for updates on the process.