As the world ground to a halt, the unthinkable happened, with weddings and wakes being cancelled. Local florist Donna Stanfield Johnson was left with thousands of pink and white ros- es for nuptials that were now called off and with a short time frame for them to stay fresh. When the Greater Sayville Chamber of Commerce heard about this, they flew into action and bought all the flowers from West Sayville Florists with a new purpose—to brighten the days of seniors at a local assisted-living facility. Chamber president Eileen Tyznar, who has made it part of her goal as a leader to “include all members of the community,” was especially motivated to help make seniors’ days a little brighter, as they have not been allowed visitors since the outbreak of COVID-19.
But the brightness of this local sup- port of West Sayville Florists did not stop with this large order for seniors— with the chamber publicizing the sto- ry on their social media pages, locals placed orders for bouquets and emp- tied Johnson’s entire refrigerator of flowers.
“The orders were really coming in. And still coming in,” Johnson said of the outpouring of support for her business. Living here for 33 years, she has come to know the beautiful steadfast- ness of the community and was over- whelmed by the support she received.
Aside from the chamber taking over what would have been flowers for a 20-table wedding, Johnson received eight orders the next day for “just thinking about you”-type occasions.
“Our town is wonderful,” she said, add- ing, “Our town rocks. We stick together.”