After three decades in the business of floral design and event planning, Jeffrey Adair and Craig Kozlowski of J Floral Art in Menlo Park plan to close their shop and relocate to Southern California.
The business partners and couple specialize in floral design for events, and have been closely involved in charitable and philanthropic events in particular over the years.
"We've been involved in pretty much any charity event you can think of on the Peninsula," said Adair in an interview.
When the pandemic struck, the supply chain for imported flowers disappeared, he said. Then, the flower market in San Francisco shut down. It's been slowly opening up in recent weeks, he said, but the more exotic flowers have been slower to return. Fortunately, he said, they did have a successful Mother's Day, which provided critical revenue to cover rent at their warehouse in unincorporated Menlo Park, located at 3489 Edison Way.
They moved their studio to the warehouse about 17 years ago, after starting about 30 years ago in the historic building at 1162 El Camino Real, followed by a location on Santa Cruz Avenue.
Over the years, the duo expanded their work into not just floral design, but coordinating events. "It's something we graduated into over the years," Adair said.
Adair said one of his favorite events to plan was Stanford's "Rodin by Moonlight" fundraiser for the Cantor Arts Center, held every two years. People dined among the stars at night, and he helped to decorate the museum and coordinate the theme. "It was a lot of fun to come up with a different theme each time," he said.
They have also been involved in civic, business and arts affairs in the community. Adair has served on the board of the Menlo Park Chamber of Commerce, and on the national board of the Human Rights Campaign. He directed the Menlo School benefit for many years and was a professional dancer and singer before opening J Floral Art. He grew up in Redwood City, attended Sequoia High School, and studied theater arts at San Jose State University before performing around the world and the U.S.
He and Kozlowski were married by county Supervisor and Assemblyman Rich Gordon the day that same-sex marriage was legalized in California in 2008, and have been involved with LGBTQ issues in the community, according to previous Almanac reporting.
J Floral plans to be in business through June 27, and is lining up a liquidation sale with supplies and props from the many events the owners have coordinated over the years, likely to be held around the third week of June.
Adair and Kozlowski are planning to relocate to Rancho Mirage, a community near Palm Springs.
It'll be different – and the changes bring feelings of excitement, nervousness and sadness, Adair said.
"It's going to be good for us to slow down. After working so hard for 30 years, we're looking forward to the next chapter," he said.