Valentine's Day Spending Up - KTVN Channel 2 - Reno Tahoe News Weather, Video -

Valentine's Day Spending Up

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Jennifer Burton
Channel 2 News

Valentine's Day has become a multi-billion dollar holiday, and that's good news for local businesses. According to the National Retail Federation, consumers will shell out an average of about $125 dollars per person on Valentine's gifts this year. That's up 8.5% over last year.

Not everyone we talked to here in the Truckee Meadows was planning to spend more, but everyone did say they do something for their sweetheart. Some are sharing the love with more than just their spouse.

Katrinka Kip was buying flowers for her son's teachers and she's spending more this Valentine's Day.

"They all get roses, the nanny gets roses," she says. "We opted out of candy and we opted for non-candy things, so that will end up costing a little more, but it's healthier."

And she's not alone. Chuck Freeland is looking forward to Valentine's Day 2012.

"I'd say I'm spending a little more this year," Freeland says. "I just got hired on at a new job," he added. 

Local businesses are also seeing the uptick in spending. Sparks Florist plans to deliver 1,200 bouquets on Valentine's Day. The day before, they were putting the finishing touches on hundreds of arrangements. Those in the flower business say there's a reason it's a good year. 

"Weekdays are much better for Valentine's Day because most people like to get flowers at work. They want to show their co-workers and friends that they are loved," said Suzanne Shepherd of Sparks Florist. 

Valentine's Day is the biggest day of the year for florists, with Mother's Day coming in second. Red roses are still the most popular, but exotic flowers are in demand too. Arrangements vary from simple to fancy,  and range from 15-dollars to hundreds of dollars. Research shows that half of all gift-givers will choose candy, while about a third choose flowers.

Even in Northern Nevada, where the economy has been less than sweet, sales of flowers are up.

"More sales, more phone calls, more web orders. We've had more people in the store," says Shepherd. "It seems like people are spending a little bit more money this year."

Not everyone will be spending more though. Some, like Rod Green, are still waiting for the economy to recover.

"I'm not working right now so things have tightened up," Green said.

Even so he and his three year old daughter plan to make Valentine's Day memorable.

"She has a little 10-month old brother at home and we'll figure something out. It'll be special for her mom," he says.

Sparks Florist, hired 30 extra drivers to deliver all these flowers to deliver its flowers. They'll be out first thing Tuesday, knocking on doors, and playing cupid. If you haven't ordered flowers it's not too late. Some, like Sparks Florist will take your order in the morning, and stores have flowers you can pick up and deliver yourself.

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