Renaissance Team Changes Name to ‘Experience Chehalis’


This week, the Chehalis Community Renaissance Team (CCRT) changed its name to “Experience Chehalis,” a move that brought with it the adoption of a new logo and brand.

The name change is now live on the Experience Chehalis’ website and social media accounts.

When CCRT embarked on rebranding last year, it took a comprehensive and thoughtful approach to the process, according to a news release.

“We began a rebranding initiative back in early November,” said Experience Chehalis Executive Director Annalee Tobey at Monday’s Chehalis City Council meeting. “We had several consultants that specialized in main street branding. … We kicked off several roundtables with the community in early November, getting as much citizen input and partner input and organization input as we could as we took these new steps to look at who we are as an organization and how we can project that personality forward.”

The goals of the name change were to simplify the organization name, eliminate confusion and reflect the organization’s mission more clearly.

“I mean, the word ‘renaissance’ will always mean a lot to me and our organization, and it will take a long time to not call it ‘renaissance,’ although answering the phone will be easier,” Tobey said.

But the name change won’t affect the work that’s already being done to promote Chehalis in all the same ways the organization has in the past, with its strategy, mission and program work being left largely the same. 

As such, Experience Chehalis will continue to promote small business economic development, community beautification, promotion and downtown development.

During the council meeting, Tobey explained that the adoption of the new logo was to remove any confusion folks may have had when seeing that the City of Chehalis and CCRT shared the same logo, since the organization is not strictly under the city’s purview. Rather, Experience Chehalis is an organization in and of itself that works closely with the city.

“It’s wonderful to be tied so closely to the city, and we don’t want that to change, (but) there are several people who consider … me as staff to the city as well,” Tobey told the councilors. “It’s just to have an accurate portrayal of our organization.”

She added that the logo comes with a litany of branding tools the organization can use “to work with as we promote our community and the branded approach (as) to how we move this forward.”

The logo is a tribute to energy and vitality within Chehalis with subtle details paying respects to the city’s railroad history.

“A fun fact is that the dots in the monogram represent the rivets on a steam locomotive faceplate,” Tobey stated in the release. “Railroading has a big place in Chehalis’ identity.”

The change also comes with the new tagline, “Spirit of Community,” which is supposed to reflect the small-town culture and can-do spirit of the citizens throughout the city’s history who have worked diligently toward a better future.

Tobey said Experience Chehalis is grateful for its time under the banner of CCRT and all the support it has received as it has grown and evolved over the years.  

Another reason for the name change is to let folks know what the organization stands for by simply hearing or reading the name, which consists of a moniker that has been used all along by the organization. 

“In our efforts to promote Chehalis, we have used the name Experience Chehalis since the beginning,” Tobey stated.

Call 360-345-1738 for questions about the name change.