DeStefano Florist is closing after 35 years in business in Arnold | TribLIVE.com
Valley News Dispatch

DeStefano Florist is closing after 35 years in business in Arnold

Tom Davidson
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Tom Davidson | Tribune-Review
Lynda Demharter has owned DeStefano Florist in Arnold for 17 years. She’s sold the Fifth Avenue building and is retiring.
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Tom Davidson | Tribune-Review
DeStefano Florist is closing after 35 years in business in Arnold.
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Tom Davidson | Tribune-Review
Lynda Demharter and Ron Kapustic tag merchandise at DeStefano Florist in Arnold on Thursday, May 2, 2019. The shop is closing after 35 years in business.

And then there was one.

For years, Arnold Flower Shop and DeStefano Florist have been a few doors from each other on Fifth Avenue in Arnold.

That’s changing this month, as DeStefano’s is closing.

“It’s time,” said Lynda Demharter, who has owned DeStefano’s for 17 years.

She bought it from founder Mary DeStefano, who operated a floral shop there for 18 years prior to that. The DeStefano family also operated a cafe and card store at the 1713 Fifth Ave. location.

Demharter, 70, of Brackenridge, was able to sell the building and decided to retire.

The new owner lives out of state, and Demharter didn’t know what they were going to do with the property.

“It’s time for me to go,” she said.

A florist is a “feast or famine” operation with busy times like Valentine’s Day, and Demharter said she’s ready to rest, spend time with her family and continue to help out Mary DeStefano.

DeStefano is known as “The Cookie Lady” in the Arnold-New Kensington area and Demharter’s also helps her bake.

“I’m happy, I’m ready. The older I get, the more stressful I get,” Demharter said. “We’re done with flowers.”

On Thursday, friends stopped in to say hello to Demharter and look around as the items a floral shop accumulated over decades were tagged and for sale.

People from Arnold Flower Shop, 1727 Fifth Ave., bought some of Demharter’s supplies and she was looking to sell as much as possible by May 26, when she has to be moved out of the building. What doesn’t sell will be thrown away, Demharter said.

She and Ron Kapustic, 82, of New Kensington, who used to deliver flowers for DeStefano’s, were cleaning up items for sale.

Kapustic said he’ll likely start volunteering elsewhere in the area.

“I’ll miss the people,” Demharter said. “I did enjoy designing arrangements.”

Tom Davidson is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Tom at 724-226-4715, [email protected] or via Twitter .

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