Baltimore-Maryland’s 2026 World Cup Host City bid has today revealed its new brand identity and logo as its bid to host FIFA 2026 World Cup matches continues to build momentum.
Reflecting Baltimore-Maryland's diverse communities and with close connections to the history of the city itself, the new brand identity embodies key aspects of the bid’s commitment to prioritizing diversity and inclusion and representing individuals from across the city and state.
The new branding and logo include references to the iconic "colors of Baltimore", depicted in the "Painted Ladies" row homes of Northern Baltimore City, which have become synonymous with the vibrant neighborhoods of Baltimore-Maryland.
Featuring local iconography, including the "Hon Playing Soccer", Pink Flamingo and Blue-Green Crab, the Baltimore-Maryland 2026 branding symbolizes the bid’s deep connections to the local culture:
- "Hon Playing Soccer"
Depicting a woman with a beehive hairstyle, the Baltimore “Hon'' pays tribute to the women of Baltimore’s working-class communities in the 1950s and 1960s and represents the people of Baltimore-Maryland’s originality and creativity.
"Hon'' is a person, a quintessential term of endearment in Baltimore’s regional dialect and the inspiration for the local arts and cultural festival, “Hon Fest''. The festival takes place in the city’s Hampden community and is widely accepted as one of the most welcoming and accepting places for the LGBTQ+ community in the U.S.
- Pink Flamingo
Deeply connected to Greater Baltimore’s artistic community and Baltimore Club Music, the Pink Flamingo can be found everywhere from neighborhood front yards to huge statues across the city. As the community has transformed from a manufacturing and shipping port to a hub for the next generation of artists and creatives, the Pink Flamingo has remained a constant icon of the local area.
- Blue-Green Crab
Blue Crab is a staple of Maryland, and represents the state’s hospitality and culinary community, as well as its natural resources, harbor, waterways, and efforts towards sustainability and minimizing environmental impact.
Local Baltimore advertising agency, TBC, designed the new brand aligning with Baltimore-Maryland 2026's commitment to showcasing local businesses at the heart of the bid and using FIFA 2026 World Cup matches to transform and regenerate the city and state.
Terrance Hasseltine, President of Baltimore-Maryland 2026 and Executive Director of Maryland Sports Commission, said: “We’re incredibly excited to be launching our new brand identity and logo for Baltimore-Maryland 2026. Representing every aspect of our diverse local communities is hugely important for us, especially as hosting matches at the FIFA 2026 World Cup would create a tremendous positive impact for both our city and state.
“TBC is a valued partner who has helped us capture Baltimore-Maryland's unique and treasured history and distinct visual identity, and we are embracing this and incorporating it into every aspect of our bid. Baltimore’s “Hons”, Pink Flamingos and Blue-Green Crab are synonymous with our communities and we’re ready to welcome the world with our famed hospitality.”
Bill Ward, Executive Vice President, TBC, said: “As a Day One supporter of Baltimore-Maryland 2026 and a proud local business, it is a privilege to have worked with the BMD 2026 team on the bid’s brand identity and logo update, which uniquely reflects our city’s vibrant and inclusive culture. Incorporating the Baltimore Colors and unique icons, the new branding brings to life the bid’s vision of creating a real, tangible human legacy for our local communities.
“TBC has been part of the Baltimore-Maryland 2026 journey from the start and to be helping to bring the FIFA 2026 World Cup to our city and state for the very first time is a huge opportunity.”
[Source: Baltimore-Maryland 2026 World Cup Host Destination Delegation]