Jul 7, 2015 - Things to Do

Stop being boring: 9 dates to spice up your summer


Can you predict your weekend before it even starts? Do you and your significant other have a routine you think is cute but other people find obnoxious? Do you have a bar where everyone knows your name because you can’t be bothered to try anywhere else? This piece is for you.

This summer, break out of the dinner-and-a-movie-followed-by-drinks date night you’ve come to know and love (but also kind of hate). There are nine more weeks of summer and we’ve rounded up nine date ideas to shake up your weekends.

(1) Laser Tag

You loved it as a kid and you’ll love it even more as an adult. This works as a one-on-one date, double date or group date activity. Play against each other if you’re competitive or team up to crush the souls of nine-year-olds around you. Bonus: It doubles as a kickass 15-minute cardio workout. Seriously, it’s so much running.

Where: Try Laser Quest off Park Rd. They’ve got a two story arena and 30 minute Ironman Missions to help you get the most bang for your buck.

(2) Picnic in the park

This one seems like a no-brainer, but I’m willing to bet it’s been years since you hit the grass for dinner. Pack sandwiches, strawberries and a chilled rosé for easy cleanup with a side of romance. Time your picnic with sunset and spend an extra hour looking at the stars. Take my word for it – your girlfriend will swoon.

Where: While Freedom Park and Romare Bearden are probably the most popular choices, try Independence Park in Elizabeth for a gorgeous view of the city without the crowds.

Park day in #clt ☀ A photo posted by @deboone on

(3) Game night 

If we’ve learned anything from romantic comedies, it’s that a little competitive banter leads to major fireworks. Set the scene with a game night date night – loser buys the next round.

Where: Head to the Blind Pig in NoDa for cheap beer, a wide selection of games and plenty of dark corners outside for… fireworks. We’re talking Battleship, air hockey, skee-ball, crane game, pool, hoops, giant Jenga, giant Connect Four, beer pong, cornhole and more.

a #bromance begins… 🏀✔️💖#noda #arcadebball #charlotte #northcarolina #vacay @richiestartnriots @bro_bro_82

A photo posted by Tessa Brooks Nichols (@tbnix) on

(4) Open house

See how the other side lives and spend the day planning a fake future (or real, we don’t know you) by taking advantage of open houses around Charlotte. Take it to the next level by planning an absurd backstory with personalities to match.

Where: Check out real estate companies like Savvy + Co., Helen Adams and The Elite Group for open houses in areas none of us can afford.

Rare opportunity to own over an acre in Eastover! This lovely home has plenty of space for entertaining but plenty of room for expansion. With over an acre, this is an entertainment compound for family and friends with a greenhouse, garden, play-set and tree swings. Mature fruit trees too! List Price: $900,000 #eastover #eastovercharlotte #charlotte #charlotterealestate #cltrealestate #clt #realestate #getsavvy #queencity #home #homesweethome #savvyandcompany @savvyandcompany @jlj3626 A photo posted by Savvy + Co. Real Estate (@savvyandcompany) on

(5) Rooftop dinner

Summer is for al fresco dining and lingering over after-dinner drinks as the day slips into night. Crank up the romance with dinner on a rooftop.

Where: While Fahrenheit has the best view in Charlotte, they’re kind of pricey. Head to RiRa and enjoy a reasonably priced dinner on their rooftop patio. Strung with lights and looking over the Hearst Tower plaza, it’s surprisingly romantic in the hours before a DJ takes residence upstairs.

We don’t take ourselves too seriously in our Whiskey Room #rirawhiskey

A photo posted by Ri Ra Charlotte (@riracharlotte) on

(6) Paddleboats

Channel your inner Alfalfa and take your Darla for a spin around the pond in a cute blue paddleboat.

Where: Expand your horizons by heading to University. Hit the shops at J. M. Keynes Dr. across from UNC Charlotte to grab lunch (and a bucket of beers) on the waterfront patio at Boardwalk Billy’s before working off the calories at the paddleboats next door.

Ready for more warm days like this to come! #GoPro #paddleboating #CTL #sunnydays A photo posted by alex vanhorn (@avanhorn25) on

(7) Have dessert first

You’ve probably heard of wine tours and beer tours, but we want you to try a dessert tour. Cheesecake, cupcakes and sweet craft cocktails are just what the date doctor ordered.

Where: Crave has all the goodies you need for a proper sampler and a wide array of unique dessert cocktails to boot. If chocolate wasn’t enough to set the mood, their cushy booths and low lighting should do the trick.

Birthday martinis with Miss Jessica Lynch! 🍸🎉🎈

A photo posted by @deboone on

(8) Couples massage class

Sure, you could enjoy a couples massage, but wouldn’t you rather give your S.O. the tools to rub on you every night? Wait – don’t answer that.

Where: There may be more legit places to learn how to rub each other in a technical way, but we’re providing you with this shady looking Groupon. Buy at your own risk.

(9) Browse local beer

Skip the bar where everyone knows your name and hit up at least three taprooms to complete this date night challenge. Whether you Uber, pedal or walk is up to you.

Where: Pretty much every neighborhood in Charlotte, although NoDa makes it easiest to get from taproom to taproom without breaking much of a sweat.

Saturday @birdsongbrewing brews with two of my favorites. Bams chose a Doin’ Thyme 🍻 #cltbeer

A photo posted by @deboone on


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