PT Garden Center’s DIY wreath station offers safe, festive family fun

Luciano Marano
lmarano@ptleader.com
Posted 12/17/20

COVID can’t cancel Christmas.

And although the customs surrounding the most wonderful time of the year may look a little different in 2020, the decorations are sticking around.

To that …

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PT Garden Center’s DIY wreath station offers safe, festive family fun

Posted

COVID can’t cancel Christmas.

And although the customs surrounding the most wonderful time of the year may look a little different in 2020, the decorations are sticking around.

To that end, Port Townsend Garden Center has dedicated a section of the greenhouse to a DIY holiday wreath-making station, where people can come and (safely distanced from others) build their own custom evergreen adornments.

“We try to prep everything for people so they can come in here, pick greens and we’ll do a little demo for them if they’ve never done it,” said Jose Borrayo, who, along with his wife Jillian, owns the establishment.

Although the stations have been set up and available to customers in years past, Borrayo said the service was never quite so official before; kind of an off-the-menu speciality.

This year, however, considering the dearth of family fun still slated to happen in light of ongoing health and safety restrictions, he and Jillian decided to more firmly establish the offering.

“Families can bring their kids, the kids can run around here,” he said. “We’ll close the doors so then that way the kids don’t escape.”

Also, they’ve tried to contain the price as well.

“The one thing we wanted to do was, ‘How can we do this where it’s affordable for everybody and it doesn’t cost an arm and a leg?’” Borrayo said.

“And in reality if you look at a wreath this size, 16-inch, at a grocery store, even Safeway, you’re paying $30 for it. Here, we’re only selling them for $16.99.”

Fresh greens, pinecones, a circular frame on which to build, and a decorative bow are all included in the cost, with prices ranging from $6.99 to $16.99 depending on size (from 6 inches to 16 inches). Additional lights are available for purchase as well, for those looking to add something extra to their wreath.

Sessions may be reserved ahead of time, though walk-ins are welcome provided nobody is already using the space.

“We want to make sure that we also do it safely and we want people to come in here and feel like they have the whole greenhouse to themselves,” Borrayo said, explaining the area is tidied up and the tools cleaned between uses.

Wreath-making is available during regular business hours (9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday to Saturday and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday). The garden center is located at 406 Benedict St., in Port Townsend.

For more information or to reserve a hour-long session, message via Facebook or call 360-385-3354.

Customer comments so far have been uniformly ebullient.

“We’ve had really, really great feedback from people who have been in here,” Borrayo said. “People have come in here and they’re like, ‘It’s been kind of a crazy year but this has definitely gotten me out of that funk.’”

And if the seasonal sights aren’t enough to cheer you, then perhaps the unmistakable scent of freshly cut evergreens will. It’s a particularly beloved perk, Borrayo said, that comes with his job about this time every year — and not just in the greenhouse.

“When I’m hanging trees I love to hug them because I smell good all day,” he laughed.

Though it’s an exciting new facet of their business, Borrayo said the wreathes are about something other than the bottom line.

“It’s so much more about giving somebody something to do at this time of the year,” he said. “It’s not about us. Obviously, we’re in business to make money, but this was nothing like that. This was more about getting people out of their homes, and get them distracted and to come in and smell something good and see something pretty; get them out of that funk. It’s been a hard year for everyone.”

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