The price of Valentine’s Day in Kent

Daniel Hale

Valentine’s Day is the day all about love and love can come in many different forms: Chocolate, roses, gigantic Teddy Bears or a romantic dinner with your significant other. If you’re lost on what to do with time winding down, Kent and the surrounding cities have plenty of last-minute, romantic gift ideas for that special individual in your life.

“For me, I normally will give chocolate,” said Erica Cope, a junior music major. “Or I find something that means a lot to them, like it’s a book they’re interested in reading or a new movie or new game. The best gift I’ve ever gotten was a giant stuffed animal.”

Several options may be found at Black Squirrel Gifts in downtown Kent.

“We have lots of gifts. We have a whole range of jewelry, which sell very well on Valentine’s Day. And of course, for your Kent friends, a stuffed plush black squirrel is always nice,” said employee, Bob Mayfield. “We do have some handmade Valentine’s Day cards, (and) some preprinted if you can’t think of anything you want to say because words escape you.”

Dennis Andre who works at Kent Jewelry on Water street said popular jewelry options can be purchased there .

“I’ve got anything from gold necklaces to bracelets to watches to earrings. Earrings are real popular, or anything heart-shaped,” Andre said.

Kent Floral Co., also on Water street, provides some Valentine’s Day must-haves.

“Roses are always the most popular,” said co-owner Libby Trimble. “They are going to run $65 a dozen wrapped, or $75 in a vase. We also make up all kinds of arrangements. We really will do anything anybody wants as best we can. If they want a Valentine’s Day arrangement, they usually start around $30 to $35. If they want a wrapped bouquet of flowers, $25, $30.”

Meanwhile, those looking for reasonably priced chocolates might go a little farther to Stow and visit Malley’s Chocolates on Graham road.

“We sell a variety of chocolates for Valentine’s Day, but a lot of people go towards our heart-shaped boxes, and they come in a half pound ($18.50), or a one pound ($29.95),” said store manager Courtney Hamilton. “Another huge seller for us are strawberries and grapes. They’re $20 per box. We have bags on sale of foiled hearts that come in milk or dark chocolate. They’re $12.50. Other than that, it’s all heart-shaped boxes and roses.”

Of course, concrete gifts may not be to everyone’s tastes.

“When it comes to giving on Valentine’s Day, I don’t really give gifts,” said sophomore chemistry major Corey Ritterson. “I think dinner is better, (or) something more intangible.”

For those in search of experiences rather than gifts, romantic dinners are served at restaurants such as Bricco on S. Depeyster street, and Bistro on Main located on Main street.

“We have really potent drinks for good prices and overall our atmosphere has a little bit of that romantic feel … especially on Valentine’s Day,” said Bricco manager Nick Jones. “In terms of spending, we are a lot cheaper than we seem. The most expensive thing on our menu is $27; that’s if you get a porterhouse. You’re looking, on average, $16 or so for a good, filling meal. Some bottles of wine will be on sale for a discounted price. The bartenders usually make up a Valentine’s themed martini.”

Bistro on Main’s owner and head chef Aaron L. Ruggles describes his restaurant as chef-driven and culinary forward.

“We have a unique menu for the night that has a lot of our favorites on it,” Ruggles said. “It also has some specialties that we’ll run for Valentine’s Day.”

Daniel Hale is a student finance reporter for The Kent Stater, contact him at [email protected]