With Valentine’s Day falling today, after days of snow and ice pummeling the county, owners of some flower shops and romantic restaurants have wondered about the weather slashing their holiday profits, although they hope Thursday’s warmer temperatures will help them.
At Fowler’s Florist in downtown Canton, owner Larry Fowler says the last few days have been full of worry that delivery drivers might not be able to brave the county’s ice-coated roads to get arrangements out on time.
On Thursday, though, above freezing temperatures came and helped to clear some of the roads and Fowler is more confident, but still worried.
“We’re not going to have as many deliveries,” Fowler said Thursday, after the shop finally re-opened. “The weather has hurt us.”
Fowler said Valentine’s Day is to florists as Christmas is to regular shops, and the weather this week will likely have a negative impact, since it isn’t clear which flowers can be delivered today and which will have to wait for Saturday.
“So far, everybody has been real nice. We tell them we’ll get them out tomorrow, weather permitting,” he said. “It’s just going to be what it’s going to be. Nothing we can do about it. We just hope tomorrow we’ll get more orders and we will. We’ve just got to look up and take what comes our way. We don’t actually have to be happy with it but there’s not a thing we can do.”
In an effort to make sure all customers can be satisfied today, Fowler said he and his wife planned to sleep at the shop and get to work early in the morning.
Frank Coco, co-owner of Brenda’s House of Flowers in Woodstock, has been more confident, but still realistic that this Valentine’s Day isn’t normal.
“We’re hopeful,” Coco said Wednesday night. “We hope that the world still sees Valentine’s Day as a viable holiday. Our team is ready and we are working the best we can.”
Most years, Coco said his shop gets about 500 orders during Valentine’s week. This week has been slower than usual, but Coco said many orders are still coming in from people out-of-state who don’t know much about how the weather is in north Georgia. Brenda’s has been warning those people, and other customers, of potential delays.
“We used be able to say, ‘Don’t worry, we’ll get the flowers there,’” he said. “We’re forced to say, ‘We’ll do our absolute best and we hope you’ll work with us.’ Generally speaking, people are very understanding.”
Even still, Coco said Brenda’s planned to do what it takes to get their orders out today, no matter how difficult it is.
“We have four-wheel drive vehicles and we’ve stayed pace with the orders coming in,” he said, adding that if the roads cleared Thursday, which they later did, delays would be even less likely.
In the hopefully rare cases of delays, Coco said he thought people would understand.
“Let’s hope that the love that exists between the sender and the receiver is
strong enough to (last another day or two if needed),” Coco joked.
Meanwhile, some of Cherokee County’s restaurants aren’t expecting the weather to have much of an impact of Valentine’s Day at all, thanks to the warmer weather and melting snow Thursday.
“(The snow is) doing nothing. It’s going away,” said Michael Bologna, head chef and owner at Vingenzo’s Pasta & Pizzeria in Woodstock. “Reservations are good, everybody’s ready to get out. As a matter of fact, the phone’s been ringing all day. We’re all human... Two days and we’re ready to get out again.”
Sarah Lenz, manager at Ipps Pastaria & Bar in Woodstock, said the weather shouldn’t have an impact on her restaurant either, because of the improved conditions.
“I’m not 100 percent sure, but as of right now, things are back to normal,” she said. “We have people calling right now.”