Collage// Katita Miller

Feeling the pressure yet? Well there’s still time to finalize those plans to sweep your significant other off of his or her feet. If you’re hungry for a change this year and feel like doing something out of the ordinary or just plain outrageous, read on for 5 creative alternatives to that fancy-schmancy dinner date you two go on every year.



1. Take an art class. 


Learn something new with your S.O. and get a piece of art out of the deal. Try a letterpress class, like this one offered by Calliope in NYC’s West Village, make a piece of pottery at TriBeCa Clayworks or learn to bundle dye fabric at the Textile Arts Center.



2. Attend a special museum event. 

Photo// Jason Brownrigg

Many museums stay open after-hours on V-Day, and some even plan special evening experiences for couples. Snag a ticket to the American Museum of Natural History’s “Romance Under the Stars” at Hayden Planetarium, sip on wine and munch on hors d’oeuvres while touring the MoMA, or get crazy with the Naked at the Getty Scavenger Hunt in L.A. (don’t worry, the only nudity you’ll see is in the artwork).




3. Go to the zoo.

Photo// David Steele

See if your local zoo has something happening on the 14th. Zoos across the country are letting visitors in for nighttime events featuring cocktails, food and info on the animals’ courtship behavior: don’t miss “Woo at the Zoo” in Central Park or  “Sex and the City Zoo,” a similar option on the West Coast.



4. See a show. 


Whether you love live music, going to the ballet or laughing till you cry, there’s guaranteed to be a performance happening on February 14th that you and your date will both enjoy. In warmer areas like Miami, you can attend an outdoor concert by Nicole Henry at Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden or head to Deering Estate for its annual “Moonlight and Music” event—don’t forget to bring a picnic! If you prefer a more refined evening, see what’s in your local ballet company’s repertoire (New York City Ballet is staging “Sleeping Beauty” this year). In the mood for some nonsense? See a comedy show at Upright Citizen’s Brigade in New York or L.A., or take it a step further at La Lucha VaVoom‘s Valentine’s-themed show: think burlesque meets Mexican masked wrestling.



5. Have dinner. 


If candle-lit dinners accompanied by corny romantic gestures aren’t your thing, we’ve found some alternative options. Learn to make sushi at Sushi by Simon, enjoy a screening of “Lady and the Tramp” and a catered Italian dinner in one of L.A.’s most legendary theaters or, if you’re feeling extra adventurous, eat blindfolded at Camaje in Greenwich Village.