Barbershop quartets deliver love notes on Valentine's Day

Story highlights

  • Valentine's Day is barbershop quartets' busiest day of the year
  • The sharply dressed groups travel around spreading love and harmony
  • Barbershop has roots in the African American community and a surprising political back story

(CNN)On a snowy February day, four men in tuxedos arrive at a wastewater treatment plant in Pennsylvania and summon the operator of the facility. Instead of inviting the mysterious visitors inside, he meets them in the parking lot of the lonely industrial complex.

Puzzlement melts into gratitude as the quartet begins to sing, delivering a barbershop message of love, pleading in dulcet four-part harmony, "Let Me Call You Sweetheart." They hand the man a single red rose and a Valentine's Day card from his wife.
"It was four guys serenading another guy in an empty parking lot in the snow," said Tim Kurtz of Allentown and a member of the Lehigh Valley Harmonizers barbershop chorus. "We tout the fact that we go into any circumstance to deliver the Valentine."