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Glendive wants you to 'Get a life'

glendive brand merchandise.jpg
Courtesy Dara Deines
Merchandise shows off Glendive's new tagline: "Get a life in Glendive."

Dara Deines was born and raised in Glendive.

She left after high school, like so many from small towns do. At the time, “I said, 'I’m never coming back. Glendive is dying.'”

She was gone for about eight years before returning for a job with the Eastern Plains Economic Development Council. In those eight years, Deines says, Glendive changed.

“I came back and went, ‘woah, we’re actually not dying,” she said. “We are trying.

“Our downtown is thriving. We have amazing entrepreneurs that are wanting to do so many cool and different things and invest in our community, and we have so many people that just want to be involved that maybe don't know how at times.”

In 2017, Glendive created a downtown master plan using a Montana Main Street grant. One of the plan’s main goals was to create a new city brand. Deines says Glendive has had “kind-of” brands in the past – the town’s name with dinosaur prints for "e"; a tagline, “I believe in Glendive.”

“But there's never been anything that's truly, you see it and go, ‘This is Glendive, this is our tagline. This is who we are and what we see our community as.’”

As head of the Glendive Branding Committee, Deines set about changing that. And on Friday, after months of public input, nearly 500 submissions, and a series of focus groups, the city revealed its new brand last week: “Get a life in Glendive.”

Deines says it reflects the “punchy” community.

“Glendive can be a challenging community at times,” she said. “But I think we have kind of an attitude to us, and I think ‘get a life’ is meant to have an attitude, like, ‘Get a life, we want you to get involved in the community. Get a life, go volunteer. Get a life, go explore Makoshika.’

“Get a life in Glendive and be a part of it.”

The process was funded through $15,000 from the Montana Main Street Grant and $3,000 in matching funds from the city. Billings-based Rebel River Creative led the brand’s creation.

“I believe the return on investment could be great,” Deines said, but it remains to be seen how the brand will be used.

She says the tagline is intended for out-of-towners – “from a tourism perspective, I think it just lends itself to some cool promotional material, cool marketing ideas” – as well as for residents in Glendive.

“Sometimes Glendive doesn’t like Glendive,” Deines said. “And so you need to grab those people and be like, ‘Hey, we are a pretty great place and you can like us too.’”