The annual spring flower show, which Dayton’s department store started in downtown Minneapolis in the 1960s, will bloom again in the Galleria in 2019.
The event skipped a year in 2017 when Macy’s closed the massive building on Nicollet Mall. Bachman’s and the Galleria shopping center in Edina revived it to large, enthusiastic crowds in March this year.
“We were thrilled with the increased traffic the show brought to the Galleria,” said Wendy Eisenberg, general manager. “We experienced traffic levels comparable to the holiday season. Our retailers were ecstatic with the number of people who came out during the two weeks.”
The resounding success of “Spring is in the Air” was likely the reason that the two venerable Twin Cities retailers announced that the floral experience will also return in 2020 and 2021 as well.
The Galleria’s restaurants were particularly pleased with a spike in business during the flower show. Pittsburgh Blue, owned by Parasole Restaurant Holdings, saw a 40 percent increase in business during the show. “That’s $100,000 in incremental business for two weeks,” said Kip Clayton, vice president of marketing and business development for Parasole. “It was like Christmas in March.”
Restaurants got into the spirit by offering cocktails and entrees tailored to the flower-show theme, including a lavender tart at Pittsburgh Blue and hibiscus margaritas at Cov.
Eisenberg said that some retailers in the Galleria want to connect with the event more directly and are placing orders with floral themes for the show next spring.
Possibly the only dampening to the show’s buzz was the frustration finding a parking place. Eisenberg said that the center will do more promotion of its valet parking near Cov and Starbucks as well as pointing people to a parking ramp at the Westin hotel next door.
When the flower show opened in the Galleria, Bachman’s also introduced a pop-up store near the Crave restaurant. The store has remained open since then, and plans are to keep it open at least until after the spring show. “It’s changed as we’ve gone through the seasons,” said Susan Bachman West, president of Bachman’s. “After the show it became an outdoor living and gift store. Now we have some fall accents and plant material, and then it will become holiday.”
She said many Bachman’s customers were disappointed when there was no show in 2017. “You don’t want to see those traditions end. We’re so glad to continue it in a refreshed way,” she said.
No theme for next year’s show has been chosen yet. “It will be visually colorful with a fragrance level too,” she said.
The 2019 show, free and open to the public, will be held March 24 to April 7 in the Galleria.