VALENTINE PREPS: Businesses Ready For Rush

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Metro businesses like flower shops and candy stores know what to expect on this holiday and in the days leading up to it. To be ready for the rush, Valentine’s Day veterans say preparation is key.

“We work real hard to get the flowers in and the designers work hard to get great designs and then it comes down to the driving on the last day. How quickly can you get it out and get it there on time,” said Robyn Sloan, owner of Doherty’s Flowers in Des Moines.

Doherty’s flowers started preparing the day after Christmas. The owner says a lot has changed in the flower business in the last five years. Because of the economy, she noticed customers cutting back and being more cautious about how they spent their money on their holiday. But this year she’s noticed it start to pick up. She has even had to order more flowers already.

She still keeps a close eye on the numbers, because having too many left overs could be the difference between making a profit and ending the holiday in the red.

The chocolate storybook says they’ve only seen Valentine’s Day business grow in the past 5 years. Their big concern is keeping up with that demand.

“We bring in a lot of people who help us out making chocolate, boxing chocolate and then ringing up lots of customers,” said Steve Shearer. He and his wife own Chocolate Storybook.

Shearer says their big seller this year is chocolate dipped strawberries; they plan to dip 10 thousand by Thursday.

For valentines veterans like Sloan and Shearer, years of experience helps them prepare. But for first-timers it’s about trial and error. Christina Moffatt, the owner of Crème Cupcake and Deserts has dealt with Valentine’s Day before, but they only delivered. This is the first Valentine’s Day they have a store front that people can just stop in without ordering ahead.

Moffatt said the day before Valentine’s Day was busier than they expected, but they are ready for the big day. They are starting baking at 3 in the morning on Valentine’s Day, and plan to bake three times what they typically do on a Thursday.

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