On a busy Wednesday morning, as people moved in between the parking lot and Planet Fitness along Route 25A in Rocky Point, two young women held fistfuls of flowers, arms outstretched.
As part of the trade association Society of American Florists’ Petal It Forward campaign, Rocky Point flower shop Flowers on Broadway looked to make people’s early day commutes a little more colorful.
Taylor Wagner and Li Guo, who both work for Flowers on Broadway, handed out bouquets to those passing by. Some looked confused at them as they presented the flowers, others questioned if the pair wanted anything for the flower arrangements. They were free, they said, and would get two so they could pass one onto the next person they see.
One man offered a bouquet said, “I don’t do flowers,” while others, like Carmen Pettus, the owner of SunShine Barre Studio in Rocky Point, said the flowers “made my day.”
Wagner, a junior designer at the flower shop, said she’s often surprised how many people seem estranged by the thought of free flowers.
“We went to the Blue Grass concert last weekend, and we were handing out flowers, and most of the guys said, ‘No, I don’t want flowers,’ while a lot of the women said, ‘Oh yes, flowers,’ she said, laughing to herself. “It’s amazing, it’s just a bunch of daisies guys.”
Over the course of the day, the duo stopped at three places, the RP Planet Fitness, outside the Pompei Pizza in Rocky Point and by Branchineli’s Pizzaria in Miller Place. By the end of the day, they had given out 300 bouquets to around 150 people.
Stephanie Navas, the owner of Flowers on Broadway, learned about the yearly event being put on by the flower society the past several years.
“We wanted to give back to the community that’s supported us all these years with a small act to brighten their day,” Navas said. “Through the positive effect of flowers, we hope to make someone’s day special, and provide a much-needed moment of calm amidst the hectic pace of life.”