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Toledo community voting on new Riverhawks logo

Riverhawks logo choices

The Toledo community is voting on a new logo. 

The Toledo Riverhawks will choose a new logo this week after a community survey on which image to use closes.

The Toledo High School art committee will make an official recommendation to the school board on which of four stylized hawks and “T” logos to use Thursday, according to a district Facebook post.

Toledo to become the Riverhawks

The changes come after House Bill 1356 was signed into law this past legislative session. It prohibits public schools from using Native American names, symbols or images as school mascots, logos or team names by 2022. There are a few exceptions. For example, the ban would not apply to public schools located on, or partially on, tribal reservations, as long as the use is authorized by the tribe.

The Toledo School District looked for an exemption to a new mascot law, seeking to retain its Native American mascot because of the work it has done with the Cowlitz Tribe and the school’s location on ancestral tribal land, but the state Attorney General declined to provide an opinion to the Toledo School District on whether or not the exemption was valid.

The district then decided to move forward with a new mascot and in August chose the Riverhawks. Superintendent Chris Rust said the district wanted to make the choice in advance of the deadline so it could make use of money set aside by the Legislature to offset the cost of rebranding.

The Toledo Indians mascot used headdress imagery, the tomahawk chop and a caricature mascot costume in the past. The district has been working with the Cowlitz Tribe to make changes for several years. It had used a dreamcatcher logo, but recently dropped the feathers, leaving the logo a stylized “T” in a circle.

Kalama, Toledo will have to change mascots as bill heads to governor's desk

The four new choices put forward by the Toledo High School Art Committee all include the head of a hawk in profile around the district’s current stylized red “T” in a circle. They range from abstract to realistic, and the four were chosen from more than 40 submitted suggestions, Rust said.

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