Let's start with the city of Valentine, Nebraska. You might want to book a "Sweetheart Package" at the Rosebud Casino Hotel, or visit the Valentine National Wildlife Reserve located 25 miles south of Valentine on Highway 83 to see Beavers and Sandhill Cranes. "The 71,500 acre refuge was established in 1935 to create a sanctuary and breeding area for migratory birds and a variety of wildlife."
I'm not sure if the founding fathers of Valentine actually named their town after the Patron Saint, but we must give a nod to the man who actually inspired Valentine's Day. Apparently he was a Roman priest under the rule of Emperor Claudius II in the 2nd Century AD. He ignored the ruler's edict not to marry Christian couples, and ended up beheaded. Could that be the origin of the old saying "losing your head to love"?
Unfortunately Al Capone and his band of hoodlums gave a sinister taint of infamy to February 14th by orchestrating the 1929 St. Valentine's Day Massacre in Chicago. He succeeded in ending "Bugs" Moran's control of the North Side, but the foul deed brought more unwanted attention from the Federal government that ultimately led to his demise.
Here's a nice idea for a unique gift instead of the usual chocolates, sweets, and flowers. For approximately $145 U.S. you can give your Valentine 2 acres of Brazilian Rain forest. This is sponsored by the World Land Trust, and they'll throw in a box of Green and Black's Fair trade chocolate to boot!
Don't forget your Valentine this year and remember...
"The only thing we never get enough of is love; and the only thing we never give enough of is love."
~ Henry Miller