Oak Harbor florist planting on Pioneer Way

Historic downtown Oak Harbor is getting a new but established business and, hopefully, for the owner, business will be blooming.

Midway Florist owner Rob McGowen poses under the business’s original sign

Historic downtown Oak Harbor is getting a new but established business and, hopefully, for the owner, business will be blooming.

Midway Florist, which owner Rob McGowen said was located at 91 Northeast Midway Boulevard for “at least 37 years,” is moving to 1090 S.E. Pioneer Way.

The shop’s sign, which stood outside the building the whole while, will move too, and the business will keep its same name, McGowen said.

“We’ll still be on Midway, but 10 blocks south, at the corner of Pioneer,” he said.

“There’s a sadness to leaving a place that’s been here so long, but I’m looking forward to the move. We’ll have the same quality and service, and we hope customers will follow us and will be pleasantly surprised by our new location.”

The current location is set to close its doors Thursday, and doors will open at the new spot on Monday, April 4. During that interval, orders will still be taken over the phone and online.

The florist’s five-year lease was near expiring, and the landlord was eager to sell the building, McGowen said. He couldn’t afford to buy the building and will be renting again at the new location, which he said will have a mellow color scheme: shades of blue and shades of tan, “like the seaside,” he said.

The new space is one-third smaller — 1,200 square feet versus the current 1,800 — but much of the current space is excess storage area or isn’t being used efficiently anyway, he said.

The new place will be laid out more effectively, giving McGowen and his four part-time workers better traffic patterns, he said. The employee head count won’t change.

More space will be devoted to gifts, as McGowen anticipates more foot traffic.

Phone and Internet orders, which make up fully 85 percent of the store’s business, will be handled with more efficiency.

The new location, in the same two-story building as Northwest Dental, was previously home to a pawn shop and a mini-mart. Most recently, it housed Haze Hookah Lounge, which opened in April 2013 and closed sometime after May 2014.

Apartments occupy the upper floor. Parking will be ample, thanks to nearby lots shared with Northwest Dental and neighbor Island Liquidation, McGowen said.

The florist shop was opened in 1979 by Sharron and Orv Stauber, McGowen said. Before that, the building housed a small-engine repair business, he said.

McGowen bought the business nearly five years ago, he said.

 

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