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Preparing for the big day

Thousands of roses will be delivered on Friday

PRINCETON — Preparations for Valentine’s Day are in full swing this week at local flower and gift shops. As the holiday begins to creep up this Friday, flowers, cards and chocolates will become items in high demand.

At Valley Flowers and Gifts in Spring Valley, owner Chuck Taliani said preparations were beginning to get hectic during the week, but he’s working ahead of the game.

Taliani has estimated his business will make about 400 deliveries this Friday.

“We’re hoping people will call in during the week, and not last minute. We’re expecting about 100 orders on Friday morning alone, and we always plan for our walk-ins,” he said.

The business is expecting to be a little busier this year with their new promotion of having their bouquets of flowers delivered by someone dressed in a tuxedo.

With a new tuxedo business now leasing a spot within Valley Flowers, Taliani got the idea to combine both businesses for the holiday. The eight delivery drivers will be dressed up in tuxedos by Something Different Tuxedos and More in conjunction with Jim’s Formal Wear.

“It’s just something different,” Taliani said. “But there’s been a lot of talk on the street about the new idea.

“Who wouldn’t want to get a dozen of roses delivered by someone in a tuxedo? It makes the delivery more special,” he said.

The large orders of roses are already in and ready to be arranged. This year, Valley Flowers ordered about 4,000 long-stemmed roses.

At Flowers by Julia’s in Princeton, owner Julia Cain is calling this time the “calm before the storm.”

As orders come in, there is still time to wait before the flower arrangements can be built. In the meantine, employees continue to take orders, stack vases, prepare products, cut balloon strings and make ribbons.

Once it’s time to arrange, Cain will gather her workers.

“We pretty much call in the troops who are willing to help us when they can,” she said.

Thousands of roses sit in the coolers waiting to be arranged.

Aside from the popular roses, lilies, carnations and daisies are also top-sellers for the Valentine’s Day business.

Cain also talked about how the holiday falling on a Friday this year will help out business.

“It’s still a work day and a big holiday for us,” she said. “When it’s on a Monday, we get hit hard because people are coming back from the weekend and thinking about it that day. When it’s on a Saturday or Sunday, it’s not as big of a day for florists. Having it on a week day is big, mostly because people like having their flowers delivered to work.”

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Valentine's Day by the numbers

233 million: Estimated number of roses produced for Valentine's Day in 2003.

$1.9 billion: Total estimated spending on flowers for Valentine's Day last year.

$18.6 billion: Total estimated spending on Valentine's Day last year.

$130.97: What the average adult intended to spend in 2013 on flowers, candy, cards, gifts and more. The number was up from 3.9 percent from 2012.

$175.61: What the average male intended to spend for Valentine's Day in 2013. Women averaged $88.78.

59.9 percent: Percentage of those polled who planned to celebrate Valentine's Day in 2013.

$36.77: What the average adult intended to spend in 2013 on flowers.
Did you know?
Opinions differ as to who was the original Valentine, but the most popular theory is that he was a clergyman who was executed for secretly marrying couples in ancient Rome, in 496 A.D. Pope Gelasius I declared Feb. 14 as Valentine's Day. Esther Howland, a native of Massachusetts, is given credit for popularizing Valentine's Day greeting cards in the 1840s.


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