After 125 years as a flourishing Orillia enterprise, Street’s Flower Shop has closed its doors permanently.
Sharon and Rob Street owned the multi-generational family business for the past 43 years. They say it’s time for them to step back from the business and spend time with family and friends.
“We were working our tails off. This was many years in the making,” Sharon said of the decision to close the Coldwater Road flower shop.
“It was a very difficult decision to make. At one point we were even thinking of opening another shop. Then we stopped and thought, 'What are we doing?' We just loved what we did.”
Despite the flower business being Sharon and Rob’s passion, they often missed out on spending time with family over the years. Typically, they were at the shop six days a week from 7 a.m. until 6 p.m. daily.
The COVID-19 pandemic didn’t play any role in their decision to close.
“During COVID, Rob became more than just the designer, but also a delivery person. Our business was flourishing, for sure,” Sharon said.
"The pandemic made us second-guess this decision many times, but we are exhausted. We were burnt out.”
More than anything, the Streets say they will miss the special relationships they had with their loyal customers.
“We will miss all the contacts we’ve had all these years - wonderful people that we made connections with. Their loyalty, their trust, and their appreciation of Rob’s designs made it a really tough decision, and it still is. It still hasn’t clicked in,” Sharon admitted.
Once the Streets went public with their retirement plans, many customers came into the shop to drop off gifts, cards and words of encouragement.
“It brought a lot of tears. Rob and I cried a lot,” Sharon said.
Rob will still freelance and create floral designs for weddings and events, keeping the business name somewhat alive for now.
The storefront on Coldwater Road has been sold to a couple who owns a mortgage company.
“We want to say thank you to the community and express our gratitude to all of our customers, our family, and the community for their loyalty, trust and appreciation over the years,” Rob said.
“It was such a joy for us to make so many special connections with amazing people. It’s sad, but we are happy as well. It certainly is bittersweet, but all good things have to come to an end,” Sharon added.