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Irish Gardens peddling flowers

Liz O'Donnell | Friday, February 13, 2009

With Valentine’s Day on Saturday, student-run business Irish Gardens is using the occasion to advertise its name on campus as well as accommodate the hundreds of students who have placed orders for bouquets.

“We are hoping to promote our name around campus,” student manager Mary Kathleen Julien said. “We want the campus community to be aware that we are around campus.”

Irish Gardens is a student-run business on campus. Julien and three other student managers, Mary McDougall, Sara Snider and Michelle Maloney, oversee the business.

They are currently in the middle of their Valentine’s Day campaign, which Maloney said is one of their busiest times of the year.

“It is definitely busy around Valentine’s Day every year, it is absolutely packed,” she said. “This is our first themed campaign, and we are hoping to promote the store as much as possible.”

To promote the event, the managers have put posters up around campus and have placed paper tents on the tables in both dining halls on campus. They also used the electronic signs in LaFortune.

Irish Gardens has set up a table on the main floor of LaFortune where students can place orders. If the students have specific questions, they are redirected downstairs to the actual store.

“The surge in business that we see during Valentine’s Day is a great opportunity for us to let everyone on campus know that we are around throughout the school year, not just for the holidays,” Julien said.

There are a variety of options offered by the store, including special bouquets that were created by the student managers.

Julien’s bouquet is called the “MK Bouquet.” It contains stock flowers, which are different types of wildflowers, snapdragons, roses, alstroemeria and gerbera.

“I wanted to create a bouquet that was both beautiful and reasonable,” Julien said. “This combination of flowers makes that possible.”

Maloney also created a bouquet for Valentine’s Day called the “Mystical Mythical Michelle.” This bouquet is simple, but elegant containing three stock flowers and three roses.

Maloney and Julien agreed that their most popular flower has been the red rose. They said that they have also been selling large numbers of daisies.

Irish Gardens also has a number of add-ins to accompany the bouquets.

“We have both latex and Mylar balloons, stuffed animals, and lollipops,” Julien said. “This year we have also added an assortment of candy bars that buyers can choose from.”

The student managers said they have seen a steady flow of traffic all week, but expect the biggest rush to come on Saturday.

“We will probably be up all night Friday making pre-orders so that on Saturday we can solely focus on completing the orders that come in that day,” Maloney said.