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8 Daring & Different Ways to Celebrate Valentine's Day in Detroit

Love is in the air…

Yes, it’s that time of year when masses of Detroiters head out to their favorite romantic restaurants for Valentines Day, the Mack Daddy of Hallmark holidays.

According to the National Restaurant Association, Valentine's Day is the second busiest holiday for restaurants and over 1 in 3 adults will go out to eat to celebrate their love.

Romantic dinners are nice and all but I don’t think you get the best experience on Valentine's Day. It’s like fabricated romance or romance for romance sake.

Dare to be different…

I propose that you put off that fancy meal for a week or two. It’ll feel more like a treat that way and not an obligation.

So what are you going to do with your one and only if you’re not breaking bread together? Jump out of your comfort zone, play, learn something new. Spend real quality time with your loved one and have fun.

I’ve scoured the Detroit area and came up with some creative, memorable ways to spend Valentine's Day.

But what about the Singletons?

No worries. Most, if not all, of these suggestions would be just as fun if you went with your BFF or a group of friends.

1. Two words: Chocolate & WineVintner’s Cellar of Royal Oak is having a Chocolate & Wine pairing on Saturday, February 12th from 12pm – 5pm; $15 per person. They’ll pair 3 of their wines with decadent chocolates from Gayle’s. Plus, you can taste 2 additional wines. Check out their special Valentine’s Day wines too, Love Potion #9, a red table wine with a hint of chocolate, and Icing, a Riesling ice wine. Last minute gift ideas include a bottle of wine with a custom label and a gift card for a wine making class.

2. Hit a hole in one -  Grab your clubs and your partner and head over to The Drive In in Clawson. Their simulator bays will allow you to play 9 or 18 holes indoors. The bays are $30-$40 an hour. Here’s the big bonus: you can order food and beer from adjoining neighbor Black Lotus. Pints while you putt, brilliant! Gift cards are also available.

The Drive In, Clawson, Michigan.

3. Clown around with your sweetie – Get a sneak peek at The Parade Company with a private tour of their studios for two. The $100 package includes a bottle of champagne, chocolate, roses, clown noses, beads, and a photo of you and your love in the Princess Carriage. The Valentine’s Day tours are being offered from Friday, February 11th through Monday, February 14th by reservation only.

4. Risqué Business – The Detroit Fire Guild is hosting a workshop on the art of burlesque. You’ll learn a bit of history and how to bump, grind, and peel for your special someone. Sexy and fun! And this isn’t just for the ladies! February 14th at 9pm at the Motor City Movie House at the Russell Industrial Center. Only $5! Bring a pair of opera gloves if you happen to have some lying around.

5. Create a work of art – At Painting with a Twist in Ferndale you and your loved one can paint individual pieces or a set that goes together as well as the two of you. Discover your inner artistic talent and put artwork on your empty walls. You can bring your own wine or beverage too! $35-$45 per person.

6. Climb a mountain – OK, maybe not a mountain but how about a climbing wall? Conquer your fears and soar to new heights with your partner. Learn to trust each other more and challenge yourself. Planet Rock has locations in Pontiac and Ann Arbor. If you’re a first time climber allow 2 ½ hours.

7. Get your skates on, mate - Bundle up, lace up the skates and head down to Campus Martius for a spin around the rink with the person who makes your heart sing. The Arctic Blast Ice Slide is now open too. Wheeee! Other places to skate outside are the Franklin Ice Rink and the Clark Park Recreation Center

8. The Dirty Show - The annual erotic phenomenon happens every Valentine’s Day in Detroit. It’s about art, erotica, and opening your mind. There isn’t anything wrong with that, especially if you’re exploring it with your soul mate. Real Detroit Weekly sums it up pretty nice in this article from 2009. Don’t be afraid! Tickets are $20.

´╗┐So, are you going to do the same-old same-old this year or are you going to take the plunge and get a little crazy?

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Reader Comments (4)

Nice ideas.

How about a little roller boogie at Northland on 8 Mile? Looks like they have open skating on Valentine's Day for the 25+ set.

February 4, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterSven Gustafson

Thanks Sven! Skating on 4 wheels a great idea. I wrote about roller skating a bit ago and everyone waxed nostalgic.

February 4, 2011 | Registered CommenterBecks Davis

These sound really cool. Too bad I am single and have no date in my near future. I also how you coined it the Mack Daddy of Hallmark holidays.

February 8, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterJamie Favreau

As I said in the post, most of these would be fun to do with a friend or group of friends. And maybe you'll meet someone special at one of them.

I'm pretty proud of "Mack Daddy of Hallmark Holidays" myself. Heh.

February 9, 2011 | Registered CommenterBecks Davis

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