Kyle Jensen / The Record — Sweet Mona’s employee Gin Woodside tops off a customers beverage with whipped cream. Owner Mona Newbauer is expecting February to be one of her busiest months.

Day of love a day of big biz on Whidbey

The holiday season and summer are the busiest times of year for most businesses. For others, February is particularly sweet.

“Valentine’s Day is a very labor-intensive holiday for us,” Tracy Schultz, owner of Flowers By The Bay, said. “It’s got to be our second biggest holiday of the year just behind Christmas.”

The inside of Flowers By The Bay in Freeland is currently homey, peaceful and aromatic, as one would expect from a florist. Behind the scenes will be a different matter by the end of the week, though. Schultz will have to use a storage unit and pack it to the brim with florals, mostly roses.

The sheer amount of the flowers is too much for the store to hold, and too much for the regular staff to handle.

“I’ll have twice the staff I normally have for the entire week before Valentine’s Day,” Schultz said. “We’ll also most likely be putting six vehicles on the road for deliveries on Monday and Tuesday. We normally have a single driver running deliveries.”

For Schultz and her flower business, Valentine’s Day is a hit. The additional storage unit full of roses has been emptied in previous years. Schultz said the time around Valentine’s Day “probably adds 30 percent growth volume.” The increase in sales has kept them chugging through this time of year for the past 20 Valentine’s Days, despite the long hours the holiday brings with it.

Flowers, a favorite of procrastinating lovers, won’t be the only product they shell out Valentine’s Day cash for. The owners and staff of various sweets businesses on South Whidbey are also swamped with orders and scrambling to check any remaining chores off of their lists. Marie Lincoln, owner of Langley’s Chocolate Flower Farm, said Valentine’s Day is also one of her business’ most fruitful times of year.

“Valentine’s Day is second only to Christmas as the busiest time for my business,” Lincoln said. “I’m in the thick of shipping Valentine’s orders for my mail orders, and it’ll continue all week.”

Mona Newbauer, owner of Sweet Mona’s in Langley, went as far to say that February is one of the best months of the year for her business for a variety of reasons, chiefly Valentine’s Day. Mystery Weekend, the Langley event that turns the city into a real-life game of Clue, also lands two weeks later. It’s a welcome month for her in the middle of a relatively dead season for South Whidbey, and she added that she spends much of January preparing for the following month.

The hectic weeks aside, Valentine’s Day is a chance for businesses to get creative with their products. Newbauer particularly is always looking to create new chocolates and sweets for South Whidbey’s sweethearts, with pink and red-colored chocolate bites aplenty. Marshmallow hearts, heart-shapped lollipops and long-stem strawberries will also be sold at Sweet Mona’s. Flowers By The Bay expands their products to include chocolates, balloons and other gifts, and Schultz has employees flex their creative muscle with various arrangements specially made for Valentine’s Day.

But even if the holiday brings with it an influx of stress and cash, these business owners don’t lose sight of what Valentine’s Day is all about.

“It’s fun and one of my favorites,” Newbauer said. “It’s that one day of the year where we can openly announce that we want to share love with the world.”

Kyle Jensen / The Record — Sweet Mona’s in Langley is a hotbed of activity during February.

Kyle Jensen / The Record — Flowers By The Bay owner Tracy Schultz says Valentine’s Day is just behind Christmas as the store’s busiest time of year.

More in Business

Mother-daughter duo bringing corners of the world to Whidbey

Fiona and Francesca Coenen-Winer sell pieces from near and far

Island Senior Resources aims to raise $10k Aug. 1

Growing demand for essential services strains nonprofit agency

Habitat taking over Saratoga Community Housing

After witnessing Saratoga Community Housing’s declining effectiveness, Habitat for Humanity of Island… Continue reading

Celebrate everything rabbit-related during Bunny Daze, March 26-31

Spring has sprung, and so have the bunnies. Celebrate the furry creatures… Continue reading

Schools foundation holding Dine Out Wednesdays

The South Whidbey Schools Foundation is holding its March Dine Out Wednesdays… Continue reading

Langley chocolatier Mona Newbauer offers a wide variety of gourmet chocolates in her shop, Sweet Mona’s. Some of those chocolates will make their way to Coupeville Saturday for the annual Chocolate Walk. Photo by Megan Hansen/Whidbey News-Times
Chocolate Walk tickets selling quickly

A handful of tickets remain available for Saturday’s Coupeville Chocolate Walk. For… Continue reading

Seed farm grows with online store | CORRECTED

The growth of Deep Harvest Farm has been measured and intentional. Owners… Continue reading

The Braeburn set to expand restaurant space in Langley

An expansion has been “long overdue” at The Braeburn, according to the… Continue reading

Whidbey Island Natural closes Langley storefront

After 17 years on First Street in Langley, Whidbey Island Natural is… Continue reading

Whidbey Coffee gets new facility, director

One of Whidbey Island’s homegrown businesses is getting a double shot of… Continue reading

Island Herb in Freeland donates half of Nov. 28 sales for Giving Tuesday

Island Herb owner Lucas Jushinski is donating green of a different kind… Continue reading

Whidbey Tire Auto set to close its doors after decades of service

After serving South Whidbey since 1980, Whidbey Tire & Auto owner Dana… Continue reading