BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - Thousands of roses and weeks of preparation. It's one of the biggest days of the year for flower shops. They started prepping "Cupid Day" back in January, but several people say this year Valentine's Day snuck up on them!
Billy Heroman's florists are stocked up for the Valentine's Day rush and ready to make the day's deliveries. General manager Ben Heroman says he's been ready since Christmas.
"It starts with ordering our flowers and adding extra people and doing everything," said Heroman. "Our staffing's probably about double right now with the extra holiday help on hand...temporary for the holiday."
Heroman says it takes just under 200 workers to make what they call "Cupid Time" goes smoothly.
"Valentine's day is 90 percent male purchasers, and like me all men are last minute planners so they tend to wait and call at the last minute so we try to be ready for them," said Heroman.
Across town at Whole Foods, we ran in to dozens of people - not just men - picking up last minute gifts.
"It's wild and crazy. There's people lined up five foot deep trying to get to flowers and chocolates and all the good food," said Jimmy Ross who was picking up his wife's gift.
This year, people say South Louisiana's holiday overload pushed Valentine's Day to the back of their minds.
"I can't remember the last time it was this close to Mardi Gras," said Celeste Buuck, a last minute shopper. "So it was just Fat Tuesday, then Ash Wednesday and I think people have been out of town."
"All these things in New Orleans going on...you kind of forget about Valentine's Day just a little bit because it's like guy things going on. Now you got to think about the girl things," said Rod Joseph, another late shopper. "It's like, uh oh. Last minute, I'm in trouble."
Heroman says it's still not too late to get your loved one a gift. He says there's always the day after Valentine's Day. Those who spent the day shopping say they're looking forward to at least 40 holiday-free days.
"That means I can save up my money and get some stuff later for Easter," said last minute shopper Matthew Duhon.