BALTIMORE — A flower store in the Bicentennial city is going to change.
On Friday, it will be open with a full menu of handmade floral items, from flower bouquets and cabbages to hand-cut flowers and hand-painted baskets.
The flower shop, which opened in the former Belleview Gardens in the 1970s, is scheduled to open in a few weeks.
It’s owned by the family of owner and longtime owner of the flower shop Bicentenary.
Owner of Belleview Flowers, John DeWitt, said the business has been open for more than 40 years.
Bicentenary has been in the spotlight since a spate of shootings in the city, including the death of an African-American man who was killed by police.
The Bicentenarians moved into the former downtown Bicentennas in the early 2000s, but are now opening new storefronts at several other locations.
John DeWit, the owner of Belleviews Flowers, says he’s thrilled to see the new business take over.
He hopes the new shop will help the neighborhood stay vibrant and provide a source of income.
Brent White, an associate professor of history at the University of Maryland, said he thought it would be great to see a neighborhood that had historically been so hostile to the African-Americans in the community start to feel more comfortable.
White said he was especially pleased to see that the new owner of a flower shop was black, because it is something the neighborhood has long sought out for.
“The flower shops were not necessarily seen as a welcoming place for African- Americans in the neighborhood,” he said.
“But it was also a place where African- American people were able to go and shop for their flowers.
It really opened up a whole new chapter in that community.”