Stevens’ Florist Celebrates 60 Years
By: Jennifer Britt
The Parsons Advocate
On July 3 the flower shop on Davis Street called Stevens’ Florist celebrated 60 years of being in business. A business started by Ethel Stevens in the late 60’s after her children had grown and left the house was purchased for her by her husband Willard. The Stevens had located to Parsons in 1949. Sadly, E. Stevens passed in 2004 at the age of 88, many years after her husband’s passing in 1978.
Deloris Stevens’ grandmother lived to be 103 years old and would make deliveries with her. D. Stevens said, “My grandmother always went with me to deliver flowers. I would call her and say I am going here, here, and here you want to go? She would say just give me time to change my shoes. That was her remark every time.”
Now two generation later the shop is owned and operated by Deloris Stevens and her daughter Leana Johnson. Along the way many family members have joined the business and helped make the shop the success it is today. D. Stevens’ brothers, Darney and Jeep, both worked for a time at the business making deliveries. Johnson said, “Someone in the family has been here working the whole time. It started out with her (E. Stevens) brother John. He worked here for awhile while she was working elsewhere. Then my uncle Darney started, and my uncle Jeep worked for the gas company and when he retired, he came to work here to help with deliveries. Those two doing deliveries was a riot.”
Johnson said, “I started when I was still in high school helping getting the flowers out for the prom, deliveries, and that kind of stuff. I grew up here basically. I went on deliveries when I was a little toddler with one of the women that worked here. About 1985 when I started working here full-time. I went to college after graduating in 1986 but still worked weekends when they needed me. I went to college for two years and then started here. I have been here ever since.”
For the past year Reva Stemple has been assisting Johnson with arrangements and work around the shop.
Even after being flooded out during the 1985 flood due to side affects from Hurricane Juan the Stevens have remained strong. Both E. Stevens and Johnson had flood damage to their homes and the flower shop was flooded up to the top of the door jam. With help from another florist in Oakland, Md during the Christmas season they were able to continue some business, but it was months before E. Stevens could return to her home on Virginia Street.
The shop specializes in just about anything floral that would be needed by someone from floral arrangements, candy arrangements, memorial grave saddles, weddings, funerals, all with added touches from flowers and plants grown in their greenhouse.
Johnson hopes that the tradition of the family-owned business will continue on in the years to come and thanks everyone for their patronage during the past 60 years.
Stevens’ Florist can be found at 210 Davis Street in Parsons offers same day delivery options. During the summer months of June, July and August they are open Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., closed Saturdays and during the busy season from December to May they are open Monday through Friday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Saturday 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. They can be reached anytime, someone will always answer the phone according to Johnson, at 304-478-2161. A website page is not currently available, but they are working on one.