Fields forever: 98-year-old flower shop relocating downtown
By ANDREW ADKins
The DAILY Independent
ASHLAND The last time the Fields family moved its flower shop, Ashland Oil wanted more space for a parking lot.
Forty years later, the owners of the soon-to-be Marriott Delta Hotel want more parking on 15th Street, and Fields Flowers is on the move again.
This time, the Fields’ family business is headed to 1516 Central Ave. The new site formerly housed Ashland Child Development. Store owner Rob Fields said the company and its 10 employees plan to be out of the building pretty soon.
On that day, “I will probably cry like a baby,” said Fields.
The owners of the soon-to-be Delta Marriott Hotel building plan to demolish the old building where Fields spent most of his childhood.
Fields has fond memories of running up the second and third floor stairs, down hallways and past storage rooms that housed hotel guests in the mid-1900s. He remembers his father, Dick, scolding him when he was about 7 years old for chipping parts of the stairwell leading to the third floor with a hatchet.
But the good memories will remain for Fields and his wife, Bev, and as hard as it will be to watch the building topple, he’s hoping the move over to Central Avenue is more sweet than bitter. The old building drips with nostalgia, but it also sometimes drips from an old stovepipe during heavy rainstorms.
The new location is in stellar condition, and offers more windows, more natural light and hardwood floors in what Fields calls a “very pretty interior.” The only real obstacle the company has encountered since agreeing to sell is moving its industrial-sized refrigerators, which won’t fit into the new building. Rather than play an unwinnable game of Tetris with the expensive iceboxes, the company plans to find new ones but keep its refrigerator motors.
The Fields Flowers crew is also in the process of trucking essential items, like containers, display cases, computers to the new flower hub.
The company doesn’t plan on skipping a beat during the transition process. Fields said they have to be moved out and into the new space by May 28.
Soon after, the old building will be struck down. WB Hospitality, the owners of the Ashland Plaza Hotel building, plan to use it and the vacant lot next to it for extra parking near the back entrance of the future Marriott Delta. The new hotel is still on track to open by the fall.
This year, Fields Flowers will celebrate its 98th year of business.
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