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Show your love

The Pacelli women's quartet of Amy Johnson, from left, Abby Leif, Paige Smith and Annie Holtz will be at people's doors, places of business and other locations throughout Austin, delivering Valentine's Day wishes as part of the Pacelli Singing Valentines. - Eric Johnson/photodesk@austindailyherald.com

Try these ideas to make Valentine’s Day a very special day

Valentine’s Day is coming up, and Austin is about to feel the love.

Yet every year there’s always some residents who won’t have time to prepare a decent date for their special someone. Late planners, take heart. The Herald lays out some of the best Austin options for everyone’s special day.

1.) Get some flowers

Everybody needs some flowers on Valentine’s Day, and the big arrangements are at floral shops like Hardy Geranium and Johnson Floral.

“We’ve got all different kinds of arrangement design,” said Vicki Trimble, Hardy Geranium owner. Hardy’s got classic roses, tulips, gerber daisies, even the mixed floral bouquets that always sell well. Residents can spend anywhere from $20 on up depending on how extravagant they’ll get this year.

“Our flowers are guaranteed. We only buy the best,” Trimble said. “If there’s a problem with it, we fix it. We’ve had roses last up to three weeks for people.”

Residents can also get flowers from other local stores.

 2.) Get a song

Yet flowers alone won’t win over your loved one. For a great surprise (and sometimes a good practical joke), why not get that special someone a singing Valentine? Pacelli Catholic Schools’ Singing Valentines are a tradition every year, as four Pacelli girls go around town spreading love and laughter everywhere they stop. Interested residents can contact Pacelli for a Singing Valentine, where students will go to your significant other’s work or class to sing a romantic song and give flowears and candy to them for a $20 donation. Pacelli students will sing from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Feb. 13.

Riverland Community College students get in on the action, too, as Riverland’s music department has put on a Singing Valentine’s program since 2002.

“We have parents who have sent these things to their kids in the middle of classes,” said Scott Blankenbaker, Riverland music instructor. “For several years we’ve sung at some of the nursing homes. It’s been a neat experience for the students.”

Between four and six Riverland students will sing “Walking on Sunshine” for their unsuspecting recipient/victim for $20, which goes toward Riverland scholarships. For $30, students will throw in chocolates and a rose. Riverland students will sing from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on Valentine’s Day. Be sure to get hold of Riverland or Pacelli as early as possible, since reservations are filling up and there’s limited times available.

 3.) Get some exercise

If you’re looking to spend a little alone time together, there are few things better than a nice, long walk. That’s why the Jay C. Hormel Nature Center is a great fit for couples on Valentine’s Day.

“We definitely have love in the air out here,” said Julie Champlin, nature center assistant.

Champlin remembers several great Valentine’s Day stories happening at the nature center. A 20-something couple approached her during a wedding expo last year to ask about possibly getting married at the center, as the young man had proposed to his fiancee on Valentine’s Day a year ago while out on the trails.

In addition, Champlin recalls the story of a man who loved the nature center so much, his wife ended up holding his reviewal at the Ruby Rupner Auditorium when he passed away a little more than 10 years ago. Champlin said the man had also proposed to his wife many years ago at the nature center.

“People who are really outdoor-minded like this place to propose,” Champlin said.

 4.) Get a nice dinner

For luxury dining, it’s hard to beat the Old Mill Restaurant.

Every Valentine’s Day comes with a new decoration designed for good memories as well as Valentine’s Day specials, like the scampi scallop supreme, fillet oscar and lobster dishes this year.

“It’s just things that other people don’t do,” said Dan Forland, Old Mill owner.

Forland said reservations have filled up fast later in the evening on Valentine’s Day on the weekends, but residents can still call for reservations. There are plenty of restaurants in Austin to choose from, including having spaghetti “Lady and the Tramp”-style at Steve’s Pizza and delicious dinners at Kenny’s Oak Grill.

 5.) Get some relaxation

If you’re ready for an intimate and relaxing experience, be sure to try a couple’s massage at one of Austin’s spas. Healing Palms Spa and Essential Life Spa both offer couples massages next week.

“Austin needs something that people can do for date night and special occasions, especially on Valentine’s Day,” said Naomi Thompson, owner of Healing Palms.

Healing Palms offers a $150 couples massage this month which includes an hour massage by candlelight, a choice of aromatherapy, a moisturizing and anti-aging treatment, non-alcoholic champagne and a gift basket which includes two hugging teddy bears, massage lotion, chocolate roses and bath salts.

Essential Life offers a similar massage for $130, which includes a half-hour sauna session, massage, non-alcoholic champagne, chocolate and flowers. Essential Life is offering the massage Feb. 13 through Feb. 18, as well as a singles massage for $65.

“It’s a great feeling … putting together something really special for couples,” said Liz Ankeny, Essential Life manager. “It’s something that it’s still unique and (couples) can stay in Austin. They can have a nice intimate, romantic experience.”

In addition, Essential Life is offering a special on its popular Brazilian wax service. Residents can get a Brazilian wax for $40 next week, instead of $55.