- The Washington Times - Wednesday, February 2, 2005

Looking to hire your own singing valentine? Here’s some information about groups and companies that will deliver your message of love.

Harmonizing quartets

• The Alexandria Harmonizers: A chapter of the Barbershop Harmony Society. Quartets available Feb. 11 through 14 to make your special someone blush with pride. Fees $25 to $75, though some may charge more depending on time and location. No booking deadline, but if too many requests come in, the earlier ones will take precedence. See www. harmonizers.org or call 703/836-0969.

• The Barbershop Harmony Society: Formerly the Society for the Preservation and Encouragement of Barbershop Quartet Singing in America, this national association boasts several chapters in this area. The society runs a Web site, www.singingvalentines.com, as a clearinghouse for people who want to order a singing valentine delivered by a barbershop-style harmony group in their area. The site features both male and female quartets. Nearly 500 groups have already registered themselves on the site and are available. Rates vary by location but usually run between $35 and $100. No Internet? Call society headquarters at 800/876-7464.

• The Potomac Harmony Chorus: A chapter of Sweet Adelines International. Quartets available to sing your love song on Feb. 13 and 14. Book by Feb. 6. Fees range from $20 for a telephoned valentine to $50 for an in-person visit. See www.potomacharmony .org/valentines2005.htm or call 703/764-3896.

• The Singing Capital Chorus: A chapter of the Barbershop Harmony Society. From Feb. 11 through 14, quartets in formal dress will sing romantic songs and deliver a posy, a card and a photograph of the occasion. The fee is $40 for deliveries within 20 miles of Chevy Chase. No booking deadline, but if too many requests come in, the earlier ones will take precedence. Call Jim Cullen at 301/434-7440, e-mail [email protected] or call Jim Nalls at 301/231-8149, e-mail [email protected] .com.

Solo performer

• Tino Aquilano: Solo performer based in Harford County, Md., who sings year ‘round and will sing the valentine song of your choice dressed as you wish. Fees start at $100 and depend on distance. Gigs deemed too far away may be declined. Book a week or two ahead. Call Singing Telegrams Since 1980 at 410/569-2742 or e-mail [email protected]

Commercial serenaders

• The American Balloon Co.: 8716 Arley Drive, Springfield. Valentine’s Day greetings delivered Feb. 14 only. Valentine’s Day special at $125 includes one of three love songs, a bouquet of balloons and a Valentine’s Day mug filled with Hershey’s kisses, delivered by a pink or black gorilla, a puppy dog or a teddy bear. Higher fees — up to $250 — bring a wider range of costumed characters and personalities. Fees also depend on time and distance. Book a week ahead. See www.allballoons.com or call 703/751-3556.

• Western Union: A live singer — one of four selected customer-service representatives in the Bridgeton, Mo., office — will sing your words to the tune of “Happy Birthday to You.” A hard copy of your message on Western Union’s traditional telegram form will then be delivered to your sweetheart by overnight mail. Fee is $30 for deliveries within the United States. Book any time. Call 800/267-0486.

— Lisa Rauschart

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