Meet YoLo the Jackalope, the face of the Wyoming Lottery Corporation.
It beat out the bucking horse and other state icons to star as the centerpiece of the lottery logo.
Warehouse Twenty One, a Cheyenne-based marketing firm, designed YoLo and the insignia. The fictitious critter received its name because it is jumping over those four letters in the logo.
The lottery held an open house Thursday at its offices in Cheyenne to unveil the new insignia, inviting guests to familiarize themselves with a figure that will be on lottery tickets, billboards and other ads throughout the state.
With a nod to the late Converse County legislator and lottery proponent Dave Edwards, the design contractor, staff and a board committee selected a logo featuring Yolo the Jackalope. The critter is seen reaching for a star with the tagline "Just Maybe." Edwards, while alive, frequently introduced lottery bills in the legislature.
"We're excited about bringing YoLo to life as we move forward with the lottery's branding process," lottery CEO Jon Clontz said. "Whether you call him a jackalope or a jackpotalope, YoLo's a distinctly Wyoming character that will become an instantly recognizable symbol of the lottery."
It was noted during discussion of the logo that Y.O.L.O. is an acronym for "You Only Live Once." There was some concern during the committee's deliberations that a cartoon character would create too much appeal to children. Clontz said the jackalope will be "roughed up" a bit to appeal to the older ticket purchasers. One board member opined that "people in the state will fall in love with this logo" because it is fanciful and playful. Y.O.L.O. appears in the words Wyoming Lottery and will stand out under the final design.
Working toward start of sales
The Wyoming Lottery Corporation's board intends to affiliate with the Multi-State Lottery that will offer Mega Millions games to Wyomingites, but it's still not certain when it will start up.
Gov. Matt Mead said today the board should take the time necessary to do things right.
"You only get one chance at this, and if you go before you're ready it'll be a disaster," he said at a press event today.
The lottery staff and eventually the board still need to approve a website development and maintenance contract probably worth more than $100,000. Chief Executive Officer Jon Clontz said that under an existing information technology contract all new computers and related software and equipment have been installed in the corporation's Cheyenne offices.
During a special board meeting yesterday in Casper, the group looked at proposals for banking, social media and finding a company that will handle the gaming activities.
The board also looked at various policy documents that would govern staff and board members' conduct. These included fingerprinting and paying for background checks on all employees and eventually lottery ticket sales personnel; check-signing authority which now includes the new chief financial officer; and an extensive ethics policy that will cover staff and board members. Among the features of the policy is a $100 limit on gifts that may be accepted by board members and staff. Since the corporation is not a state agency in the traditional sense, rules governing the board have to be specially established.
Friday was to be devoted to a day-long board-training session, according to chairman Brian Scott Gamroth.
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