As love fills the air nearing Valentine’s Day this season, planning the perfect date night is at the top of the agenda for many. While dinner and drinks are always sure to please, you and your sweetheart deserve something extra special this year. Surprise them with one of these unconventional date ideas guaranteed to make sparks fly!
Explore COSI and Go Brewery-Hopping
COSI’s monthly Discovery Nights offer the 21+ crowd the chance to explore the museum after-hours while taking part in special themed attractions like live experiments, workshops, planetarium shows and specialty cocktails. February’s edition of the event conveniently falls on V-Day and visits the theme of ‘Love and Attraction.’ Get lost with your sweetheart amongst COSI’s exhibits, learn something new, then finish the evening brewery-hopping for nightcaps at Land-Grant, BrewDog or Taft’s Brewporium just around the corner from the museum.
Sample Food & Wine in a Botanical Paradise
Known for being a popular wedding backdrop, the Franklin Park Conservatory’s lush botanical gardens provide a notoriously romantic environment for lovers. The attraction will be hosting a special culinary event on Valentine’s Day evening, which will feature chef-prepared food & wine pairings, a champagne toast, live music and a cash bar. The Conservatory’s indoor exhibits and annual orchid show will also be open to visitors for after-hours exploring.
Head Downtown for Dinner and a Show
After grabbing dinner at a favorite Downtown restaurant, cozy up in the dark with your sweetie at one of Columbus’ most beloved theatres for an evening of entertainment on February 14. Take a whimsical trip to Wonderland with BalletMet’s “Alice” at the Ohio Theatre, or experience Opera Columbus’ modern take on the romantic comedy “The Barber of Seville” at the Southern Theatre. Couples who prefer live music can also catch a Frank Sinatra tribute at the Palace Theatre with the Columbus Symphony, or join the Jazz Arts Group for a sensual performance from the Ariel Pocock Quartet.
Hit the Nightlife Scene after a Hockey Game
Taking in a live-action sporting event is a surefire way to get you and your honey’s hearts pumping this Valentine’s. Head to Nationwide Arena to cheer on the Columbus Blue Jackets as they face the New York Rangers, then venture into the buzzing Arena District for drinks after the game. We suggest celebrating at the CBJ-themed R Bar Arena, hitting the dance floor at Big Bang Dueling Piano Bar, or heading up to Park Street for a stretch of bars like BBR, Bar Louie and Callahan’s.
Flex Your Creative Muscles and Learn New Skills
From blacksmithing and woodworking to photography and fine art, The Columbus Idea Foundry offers a plethora of creative hands-on workshops and classes at their Franklinton studios year-round. Their much-anticipated Valentine’s Day Maker Date Night will return for its 8th year in 2020, offering a 3-course meal from a top tier local restaurant, beer & wine, plus an assortment of hands-on activities to explore alongside professional artists and craftsmen.
Dance the Night Away in an Interactive Art Installation
Find love on the dance floor and wonder around every corner as Otherworld hosts a live DJ set from electro-pop duo Chromeo on Valentine’s Day evening. Sweeping headlines across the nation since opening last year, Otherworld is a 32,000 sq. ft. interactive art installation that features 47 rooms full of optical illusions, secret passages, and out-of-this-world visuals born from the minds of over 40 artists. Part museum, part funhouse, Otherworld will keep you and your date intrigued for hours, and the tunes will keep you on your feet all night.
Solve a Murder Mystery
The Dinner Detective will serve supper with a dash of suspense this holiday with one of their immersive murder mystery events at The Sheraton Columbus Capitol Square. As you and your date enjoy a four-course dinner, you’ll find yourselves amidst a theatrical crime scene, solving hidden clues and encountering surprises along the way to cracking the case. If you’re lucky, you might become Top Sleuth and head home with a special prize package.