Daring First Dates

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So dinner and a movie is getting to feel like a comfortable, old sweater. Sure, it’s cozy, but not really exciting. It’s your old stand-bye that never lets you down, the tried and true way to test the waters with someone new.

When you’re single and looking for love, everybody knows you have to have first dates. While dinner and a movie is fine for some, why not bring a little excitement back into the world of dating? There are millions of creative ways to impress on a first date, and at least some should be tried at least once in your life. While you may not be with your first date forever, trying something new will at least afford a break from the ho-hum routine of movies and coffee shops.

  • Comedy Clubs- Hitting a comedy club is a light-hearted way to spend a night out. Whether it’s Improv or a standard set, it’s a different way to have fun that your date won’t expect. Make sure, before you go, that the comedians that are on aren’t overly offensive. If it’s Improv, you usually don’t have to worry.
  • Lots of people think that dates have to be at night. Why? Meeting during the day offers less pressure and a more light-hearted atmosphere. You can do things like go to the park for a picnic, or go the zoo.
  • If there’s a carnival or State Fair in town, head over that way. Fairs are fun, relaxed, and offer plenty of things to do. You can play games and win prizes, see the award-winning heifers and taste homemade jam. If it’s a carnival, there will be rides to explore and plenty of people to watch.
  • Expanding on the picnic idea, why not make it a super-special picnic? Stock the basket with wine, expensive cheese, and some delectable finger-food, and make sure you take a blanket. If you live within an hour’s drive of a really impressive view, why not take a little road trip? Spending time in the car will give you both time to get to know each other. Make sure you have some low-key music to listen to as well.
  • If you’re lucky enough to live close to the ocean, why not go crabbing? Make sure you tell your date in advance to bring appropriate clothing (although you can keep it a surprise what you’ll actually be doing). You can finish off the night with wine and dinner at a great local seafood place.
  • Hit an afternoon baseball game, especially if the weather is nice. Finding a minor league game is fun as well since they’re more intimate and relaxed.
  • If there’s an amusement park close by, an afternoon spent here will be really fun. With plenty of rides to experience and tons of people to watch, you probably won’t have a lack of things to talk about.
  • If your date is outdoorsy, try going for an afternoon guided horseback ride. If you live close the ocean or the mountains, this can be an especially cool way to spend the day.
  • While activities like bowling and Putt-Putt Golf may seem hokey, they’re very low-key and can be fun ways to get through a date.
  • Go for a hike. This is a nice way to spend an afternoon, get some exercise, and be outdoors. Make sure you pack plenty of water and yummies to snack on, and tell your date to wear appropriate clothing.
  • If it’s summertime, hit a water park for a day. Water parks bring out the kid in everyone, and will be a fun way to cool off during the heat of summer.
  • If it’s winter out and you’re lucky enough to have snow, why not go sledding? Make sure you pick a spot where you can both go inside and warm up when you’re done. Hot cocoa and a yummy meal afterwords will be much appreciated.
  • You can also go ice-skating or roller-skating if you live close by a rink.
  • If it’s a clear night, head out of the city to go stargazing. Pack a blanket and a thermos of hot coffee. If you happen to have a telescope, so much the better. You might want to brush up on your constellations before the big night out as well.
  • If you live anywhere close to some vineyards, go on a wine-tasting tour.
  • If you’re feeling artistic, why not head over to one of those pottery places that let you glaze a piece and then come back later for the finished product? This is a great, fun way to break the ice. You can go get dinner and then come back to check out your artistic genius.
  • Visiting a public garden is a relaxing way to spend a summer afternoon. They are usually extraordinarily landscaped with plenty of flowers, so it might be nice to bring a picnic here.
  • Pick a town or city nearby that neither of you has been to and go exploring together. You never know what you’ll find to do!
  • Take a boat ride. Many parks offer canoe and kayak rentals. As both can be tricky, read up on how to do both these things so you can offer some instruction to your date if they’ve never done it before.
  • Check your Sunday paper for local special events. Lots of times things you’d never come up with on your own are listed in here.

Remember, dating doesn’t have to be the nerve-wracking, awkward experience most people expect it to be. By keeping your first date very low-key and active, it will take the pressure off and allow both of you to have fun and get to know each other, which is really what dating is about in the first place.

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