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Valentines Day by the numbers

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FARGO — The Valentine's Day love bug is expected to bite a $19.6 billion dollar dent into America's pocketbook, according to the National Retail Federation.

Whether you love it or loathe it, over half of Americans are expected to indulge in Valentine's spending, averaging about $143.56 each, the retail federal said.

Shotwell Floral in Fargo said Feb. 13 and 14 are its busiest days of the year; it's a grand event that it begins preparing for right after Christmas.

"It's definitely the number one rose holiday," JD Shotwell said. "It's a great, beautiful gift, and you know it's always a way to give out happiness on a nice holiday."

The shop ordered approximately 7,000 red and multi-colored roses for the occasion and hired an additional 20 drivers to help with their 700 local deliveries.

"It's a lot of roses to go out in a short time period," Shotwell said.

In total, the federation estimates over 250 million roses are produced for the holiday, with a price tag of $2 billion for flowers, overall.

The spending doesn't stop there.

The National Retail Federation predicts these numbers as well:

• $1.8 billion on chocolates

• $894 million on cards

• $4.7 billion on jewelry

Despite all the options, The National Confectioners Association said 94 percent of Americans say they want to receive chocolate or candy for Valentine's Day.

It's not just roses, chocolates and cards that see a hike in numbers; dating apps like Tinder also see a jump in single people by about 20 percent.

Locals like Jacob Stangret say it's a fun way to meet people and even match with friends you already know.

"I like to see who I can match with, with my friends, so that's kind of the hysterical part about it," Stangret said.

In the end, happiness experts like Pamela Johnson with the Secret Society of Happy People, say it's not always the money that buys happiness at the end of the day.

"Happiness is an individual experience," Johnson said. "You can't really buy it, but if these things do make you happy to do for someone or for someone to do for you, then I think it's great to embrace it."

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