So you’re single; or you’ve been in the same relationship for years; or you keep hooking up with your ex/best friend/ neighbor who has a stocked pantry and a really good view. Who cares! Valentine’s Day is for lovin’, and no matter the state of your romantic affairs, you deserve a rendezvous-filled good night. We’ve compiled the ideal itinerary for every kind of date – satisfaction guaranteed.
Friends with Benefits:
- Westminster Dog Show: Who needs roses and a box of assorted chocolates? Get delivery, jump into bed, turn on your TV, and admire some good looking hounds at the second longest-running sporting event in the country. Whether you’re anticipating the debut of the Icelandic sheepdog, rooting for the Brittany Spaniel, or easily amused by the dog handlers’ two-piece ‘80s suits, this show is a good respite from the overwrought romance and drama that is Valentine’s Day – and a real relationship.
- HiChristina (Mad) Love at First Sight: Enter a Victorian parlor, and run around and mingle with wandering iconic personalities like Don Juan, Marilyn Monroe, and Shakespeare. Get a sugar-high from the hand-made chocolates being passed around and join a parlor game of show and tell that just might surprise you both.
- Cedric the Entertainer’s Valentine’s Day Show: Laugh away the awkwardness with the star of Barbershop and Spike Lee’s The Original Kings of Comedy. His show at the Beacon Theatre will serve as perfect fodder for the post-show meal, and will be a better gauge of one another’s sense of humor than the 17th question on OkCupid’s match questionnaire.
- Buttermilk Channel: Find some comfort in the food at this lauded Carroll Gardens spot that specializes in all things butter, waffles, and pecan pie. With its three-course prix-fixe menu, you and your new friend can delight in duck meatloaf with bittersweet chocolate-duck jus, fried chicken with cheddar waffles, pie, and barbecued oysters – an aphrodisiac.
- Never Sleep Alone: Alright, so you might be happily on your own, but who can say no to a show that’s designed to hook you up? In this appropriately named performance by sexual psychologist and music therapist Dr. Alex Schiller at Joe’s Pub, the Dr. dispenses advice from her book Get Laid or Die Trying, performs some sex-infused pop songs, and encourages mingling between all the rows and legions of single people in attendance. If you’re feeling timid, just sign up for the more expensive “voyeur” seat in the back and watch the action unfold.
- New York’s Largest Singles Anti-Valentine’s Day Party: Chat and drink with over 150 like-minded folks at Stitch, a two-tiered classy lounge that was once a garment showroom. Wash down the free hors d’oeuvres (from 7:30pm-8:30pm) with Happy Hour drink specials, and enter your name for door prizes and weekend getaways. Oh, and maybe network. And meet someone.
- Romance Under the Stars: So it’s your second date and you still hardly know each other. Amp up the flirting with a night of getting cozy under the stars at the Museum of Natural History’s Hayden Planetarium. Stay toasty inside with a 90-minute open bar of champagne and cocktails, a performance by the Josh Rutner Quartet, and epicurean bites like chocolate truffles and baby artichoke and chanterelle tartlets. Listen to the romantic stories based on the mythology of the stars, and begin to create your own.
- BAM’s screening of The Shop Around the Corner: Before the AOL-inspired You’ve Got Mail, there was this 1940s flick about two gift shop employees who unknowingly fall for one another through the mail as each other’s pen pals. Jump into the nostalgia of the pre-Twitter days, and enjoy the sweetness of another couple’s budding relationship.
- Aphrodisiacs & Amor: Skip the long and expensive dinner routine, and opt for this blindfolded tasting feast at Shag Brooklyn. With an aphrodisiac-riddled menu prepared by Food Network-featured Nuevo Latino chef Alex Garcia, you two will tease and titillate your taste buds as you take turns blindfolding one another and indulging in the unseen, never-before-tasted foods of love. Play on!
- Filthy Gorgeous Burlesque: Any show spotlighting half-naked, ornately-garnished women and men stripping, singing, and telling suggestive tales is sure to keep the passion flowing throughout your night. Plus, the New York City Burlesque Choir is performing, which is basically the older, half-naked version of the choir you were in in high school. It’s good to return to your roots.