Candy, flowers, and even heart-shaped pizzas may come to mind when preparing for the 14th of February.
But where do these traditions come from? How are Americans celebrating this year? Here’s some fun facts about Valentine’s Day:
- Not surprisingly, the Legend of St. Valentine bears little resemblance to our modern celebrations. It is alleged that before his death, St. Valentine signed a letter to his love with “From your Valentine.”
- The Greeting Card association estimates that 145 million Valentine’s Day Cards are sent every year, second only to Christmas.
- A somewhat polarizing celebration among Americans, only around half of U.S. adults will celebrate Valentine’s Day this year, according to statista.
Recognized by many as a celebration of love, Valentine’s Day in the United States also represents major economic activity. In total, consumer spending on Valentine’s Day in the U.S. is expected to total 21.8 billion dollars this year. This is quite a large number, but is actually significantly less than years prior due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Dining-out options represent another likely change for this year. More people will be celebrating with a night in or ordering take out rather than a traditional date night.
If you’re looking for last minute gifts or activities, here are some options:
- Gift cards for a favorite local business. With economic uncertainty, now is an extra important time to spread some love and support to the local community.
- DIY “coupons.” Make slips of paper with activities to give to your loved one to redeem when they wish. These could be thoughtful gestures like serve breakfast in bed or playful options such as watch your (terrible) show, set thermostat to your (freezing) setting, and load dishwasher your (wrong) way. Not only are these coupons an inexpensive option, they can also really come from the heart as you personalize them and add some levity to pandemic life!
- Virtual “Palentine’s” party! Single? Complicated? No worries! This time of year isn’t just for romantic love – set up a call with friends to watch cheesy rom-coms, share embarrassing date stories, test out a cat filter, and snack on everything heart-shaped.
This year we were inspired by Valentine’s celebrations of our youth and set up small treat boxes in the office. Everyone received candy, stickers, and a small fortune to unbox. In addition, team members decided to get small surprises to give to one another!
So, how are you celebrating this February 14th?
Romantic candle lit dinner with a loved one? Or is it a time to poke fun at our traditions and instead gather – virtually – with friends? Let us know!