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Valentine's Day Midtown Style

Like it or not, the most amorous day of the year is upon us.

Yeah, yeah, yeah, Valentine’s Day has arrived. Love, romance, flowers, candy, jewelry, cards, dinner, etc. etc. We get it. Or do we? Here’s a few facts about how Valentine’s Day has evolved over the centuries:

1. We eat chocolate on Valentine’s Day because it is said to inspire love. We’ve all heard that chocolate is an aphrodisiac, and while that may be true, the candy ritual is far older than that. In medieval times, women would eat sweet and sometimes bizarre food -- including chocolate -- the night before Valentine’s Day. This was supposed to inspire dreams in which they would envision their future spouse.

2. Cupid is misrepresented. The original Cupid was a demigod in Roman mythology; he was the son of Venus, goddess of beauty and love. Over centuries, Christianity mingled with the old belief system, and Cupid was reduced to a cherub, one of the choirs of angels -- which is why he is now found stamped on Valentine’s Day apparel as a chubby baby sporting a bow and arrow and impossibly tiny wings.

3. The first mass-produced Valentine’s Day cards were made in the 1840s. The invention of this time-honored tradition is credited to Esther Howland of Massachusetts, who developed a successful business by making Valentines out of lace, paper and floral décor. She is often referred to as “the Mother of the American Valentine.”

4. Richard Cadbury created the first box of Valentine’s Day chocolate. Another Valentine pioneer of the 1800s, Richard Cadbury cashed in on the holiday by using his father’s chocolate company to create the first marketed box of love-symbolizing candy. 

5. The rose is not just popular for its color. Sure, red is technically the color of Valentine’s Day -- and love in genera -- but there’s another reason why we give roses on V-Day. It turns out that the rose was the favored flower of Venus, Roman goddess of love and mother of the modernly-forsaken Cupid.

And what about those flowers? There’s no need to stress over sending the wrong message with a Valentine’s Day gift. Not when you know what the gift of flowers means thanks to Pike Nurseries.

Flowers for your Special Someone:

  • Red roses – true love, desire, passionate love
  • Tulips – perfect love, comfort and warmth
  • Orchids – luxury, refined beauty
  • Lilac roses – love at first sight
  • Carnations – new love, fascination
  • Gardenias – deep, old-fashioned love

Flowers for your Friends:

  • Yellow roses – friendship, lightheartedness, happiness
  • Pink roses – caring, gratitude
  • Orange roses – enthusiasm, warmth, energy
  • White roses – forgiveness or remembrance
  • Alstroemeria – friendship and devotion
  • Peach-colored roses – appreciation

Today not your day? You might want to consider one of these anti-Valentine’s Day activities then. No anti-Valentine’s Day activist should be without the Anti-Valentine’s Handbook (available at amazon.com). This pocket-sized manifest includes a list of the best movies for a night alone, anti-Valentine’s Day recipes, “worst date” stories and other ideas to help you avoid the heartache of Feb. 14.  

Or maybe throw an Anti-valentine's Day party? Invite guests to wear black and decorate with dead flowers. Find anti-Valentine’s Day party ideas here.

But what if you have to participate and you’ve awaken today having planned nothing. If so, Dacula Patch has a host of that you might want to check out.

Of course, there’s plenty of dinner options around Midtown. Chef Ford Fry is offering a $55 four-course menu (a “taste”+ three courses) at JCT. Kitchen & Bar.

Spice Market is offering a four-course prix fixe Valentine’s Day menu. The dinner for two is $75, tax and gratuity not included. Guests who would like to toast their love can purchase the four-course prix fixe dinner for two and a half bottle of Veuve Clicquot for $99, tax and gratuity not included.

has a V-Day special that consists of a burger for two, plus two sides and either a large format beer or bottle of wine for $39.

And at , a free dinner will be held at 6 p.m. featuring good food, pictures and stories of couples who met and married at Grace. No sweetheart required but an RSVP is requested by calling 404-876-0073.

And it should be a artfully romantic night at the where lovers can Visit Picasso to Warhol: Fourteen Modern Masters, sip champagne, sample tasty treats, enjoy music and dancing, and so much more including:

Romantic Music
Saxophonist Dwayne Bosman, 6–7:30 and 8–9:30 p.m.
Margaretta Taylor Lobby, Wieland Pavilion

Songstress Kathleen Bertrand and Friends
7–10 p.m.
Robinson Atrium, Stent Family Wing

Atlanta Swing Dance Era Association
Learn to swing dance and enjoy dance performances
6:30, 7:30, and 8:30 p.m.
Robinson Atrium, Stent Family Wing

Romantic Sketches
Drawing in the Galleries, 6–9 p.m.
Wieland Pavilion, Skyway Level

Couples Photo Booth
6:30–9 p.m.
Stent Family Wing

Tickets are $25 per person, $40 per couple. Member cost: $10 per person, $20 per couple.

And with the purchase of a $15 voucher that is good towards any food and drink purchase, ice skating is free today at . The voucher can be used at a later date.

Or if you’re just dead broke, you might consider singing your sweetie a love song. Getting serenaded is rather romantic and here's a you could use to woo that special someone.

And if you can’t sing, merely sit your gal or guy in front of Midtown Patch and enjoy a pair of local V-Day performances from a year ago today. For Widespread Panic lovingly jamming through "Sultans of Swing" at the , click here. And for the Black Lips thrashing it with gusto at the Clermont Lounge on Feb. 14, 2011, see here.

But regardless of what you do or don’t do today, try and feel the love at some point and by all means, have a happy Valentine’s Day!

Did we miss a local V-Day event? Let us know in the comment box below.

Hunt Archbold (Editor) February 14, 2012 at 12:31 PM
Quite simply folks: Valentine's Day. For, against, don't care or no comment?

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