Saturday, September 14, 2013

80 classic and totally unique date ideas

Ammon and I have been going on dates since January of 2011. That is at least 2.5 years of dating. And because we are the adventurous type... that means we have been on a lot of dates! And because going on a planned date once a week is very important to us, we still go on dates. A couple weeks ago, as Ammon and I were trying to think of what to do for date night, I started looking at some lists people have posted on the internet. While doing so, I came across some really awesome ideas. Then it occurred to me, why not  make my own list for others to use?

After many hours and hours of researching, compiling, contemplating, and experimenting .. I give you... 
wait for it...
 80 different date ideas that Ammon and I have already done (and loved!) or want to do one day. 

Just so you know-my date list is not like all the other date lists you've seen out there. Trust me. I've been looking. My date list includes very random/creative/unique things that Ammon and I came up with, tested, and loved. My date list also includes picture of us doing the dates together. So the next time you're trying to plan date night, please refer to this list and have fun!  

Stay-at Home Dates:

1. Movie Marathon. Haven't seen the Harry Potter, LOTR, Star Wars or Toy Stories series for a while? Host a movie marathon and see how far you get. Eat popcorn and snuggle up! 

2. Finger painting. Go to your local grocery store and grab some poster paint and a giant poster. Use your hands [and feet if you want] to create a work of art!

3. Play board games or card games. Look through your collection of games and cards. Play one you haven't in a while. Don't have any games? Go to your nearest thrift store or grocery store and buy a new one to play. There are many card games out there. Learn a new one!

4. Try and recreate your favorite restaurant dessert. Think of your favorite restaurant, buy the ingredients it takes to make it. (Or ones you think you need) and see if you can make it just as good or better! Or try making a dessert you've never made before.
This is a recreation of our favorite dessert, the cookie monster
5. Indoor camping. Want to go camping, but it's raining outside? No problem! Set up your tent inside, pull out the sleeping bags and camp chairs. Make some s'mores over the stove and tin foil dinners in the oven for dinner. Tell each other camp stories. Get some glow n' the dark stars and place them on the ceiling, turn out the lights, and go star gazing! Ammon and I still haven't done this one, but I really want to some day. 

6. Camera fun! There are a lot of fun things you can do with a simple camera. Mine and Ammon's favorites include making it look like we can balance things on our face or fingers. We also like wiggling our faces as fast as we can and then seeing what the camera captures. You really could spend hours doing this. 

7. Read a book together. Pick a book you both have been wanting to read or one that you know you both love and take turns reading it out loud to one another. Make some predictions and discuss your thoughts at the end of each chapter.

8. Make it a theme night. Center everything you do around a certain theme. For example, eat Italian food, watch the Italian Job, build a leaning tower out of marshmallows and toothpicks, and play super mario brothers while wearing paper mustaches. 
Children at the

9. Glue gun/Popsicle stick creations. Spend a few hours building whatever you can think of using a couple glue guns (they're only 3 dollars each), Popsicle sticks, and acrylic paint. When Ammon and I did this, Ammon built a ship and I made a tower. If you are a pyromaniac like us, then enjoy watching them burn

10.Paper Mache. I remember doing this one as a kid! You can make pinatas, bowls, hats, and many other things. This website gives really great step-by-step instructions on how to make paper mache with only Elmer's glue, water, newspaper strips, a balloon, and paint.

11. Make a children's book. Turn the story of how you met into a children's book. It is really cheap to laminate pages and add a spiral bind. Your children will love reading it years down the road.

12.Glow Stick dancing. Go get some glow sticks, turn on some pump-up music, turn out the lights and dance your heart out while holding your glow sticks. (I haven't personally tried this one, but it sounds really fun! Especially if you both like to dance.)

13 Play the wii. Playing the wii is always fun. Maybe try and do something different such as hosting an Olympic event with prizes for whoever wins. Make Miis of people you both know and try and get the other person to guess.

14. Origami night. Look up how to make cool things out of paper and see if you can do it. This can definitely include paper airplanes or snowflakes. See who can get theirs the farthest. Or who can make the coolest snowflake.

15. Adding light on a dark night. During the dark of winter, make some light together. Build a fire in the fireplace. Don’t have a fireplace? Light a whole bunch of candles in a grouping. Lay out a blanket and have an indoor picnic. Read poetry. 

16.Make a fancy/cool cake. This website includes some really sweet cakes and some step by step instructions on how to make them. Make one that stands out to you. This is the only cake Ammon and I have ever made, but it turned out amazing! And it was fun to make.

17. Love Languages. Read through the Love Languages book together and see how you can improve your relationship. Try and figure out what your love language is. 

18. Egg drop experiment. You might remember doing these in one of your science classes when you were younger. Each person gets an egg and can only use a certain amount of materials to try and make a parachute. (For example, a plastic bag, string, paper, cotton balls, toilet paper tubes, tape, etc.) After you are all done protecting your little egg, find a really high place to drop them and see whose egg survives. If they both survive, try a higher spot. 

19. Skittle/M&M game. This game is a lot of fun and will literally take your breath away! All you need is 2 dice, a large bowl filled with skittles or m&ms, 2 straws (one for each of you) and two smaller bowls. Place the large bowl of skittles or m&ms in between each other. When it is your turn, you transfer a skittle or m&m from the large bowl to your smaller bowl using only your straw and your breath. Meanwhile, the other person will keep rolling the dice until they get a 3 or a 7. When they do, it is their turn to start sucking skittles into their bowl. Game is played until the bowl is empty. Count how many each person got. Whoever got the most at the end wins. (Or whoever didn't pass out.) This game is more fun with more players, but it works for date night as well. :)

20. Marshmallow creations. See how many animals and other creations you can make out of marshmallows, toothpicks, and paper.

21.Costume Party. Each spouse privately creates a funny costume from what you have around the house. (No need to buy anything, just use pots, paraphernalia, jewelry, and even root through your spouse’s clothes to put items together in weird or scary ways.) Then come together and reveal. For you married couples: I'm sure you can have lots of fun with this one. wink, wink. 

22. Waiter’s Night. Pick a night to “wait” on your spouse. You get the drinks, the snacks, his/her slippers, favorite game, etc. You can even dramatize your role as servant. Just make sure that you alternate the favor sometime soon.

23.Swapping shoes. Try walking in your spouse’s shoes for an evening. This could mean figuratively, literally, or both. Try to understand life from your spouse’s perspective. Even if you don’t exchange shoes, at least change roles for the evening. 

24. No Tech. Commit to a technology-free night. Turn off your cell phones, computer, the TV, and the lights. Use your imagination to see what’s left to do without electricity.

25. 20 questions. Whether you've been on 3 dates or married for 3 years, there are always more things you can learn about each other. Take turns asking each other open-ended questions that you don't know the answer to. This Link includes a fabulous list of questions. 

Cheap dates outside the house:

26. Arcade. Gather up all your loose change and hit up the nearest arcade. See who can get the most tickets or shoot the most bad guys. Ammon and I like to go to Nickel City in Orem. 

27. Tandem bike. Rent a tandem bike and cruise the town. Or better yet, ride up the canyon or near a beach. 

28. Fast food fun. Go eat at your favorite fast food restaurant. To make it more memorable, bring a small game with you to play while inside. See how many weird looks you can get!

29. Walmart. The list of activities you can do at walmart are endless. For example, walmart bingo, picture scavenger hunt, pick out something for the other person and explain why you got it over dinner, etc. Ammon and I like to visit the fish and see which ones follow your finger. (I think that means they're really hungry if they do.)

30. Role play. Pick a new identity. (Name, background story, future goals) and go out to eat somewhere. Try to stay in character the whole night. 

31. Make a music video. Record each other dancing, singing, and anything else you can think of around your city or out in nature. Go home and put it to some music and turn it into an epic music video.

32. College sport. Depending on the price of tickets, go cheer for your local college game. This could be basketball, soccer, football, or volleyball. Even if you don't attend the college, or know the athletes, pick a team and cheer extra loud for them. Switch at half-time.

33. Pretend-You’re-a-Tourist date. Look around your city and do the things a tourist might do – go to an overlook, a quaint neighborhood, the botanical gardens, a museum, whatever is special about your hometown. Take lots of pictures. Get food at the unique food places. Gawk if you like, after all you’re a tourist. 

34. Bowling. You can never go wrong with bowling. Bring a bag of skittles. Determine what each color represents before you begin bowling. (For example, red=bowl with other hand, green=bowl backwards, yellow= granny style blue=as fast as you can) Take turns drawing a skittle and bowling accordingly. My husband and I also like to make bets before we play. Loser owes winner a 10 minutes message, or winner gets to pick the movie that night. 

35. Book Store it up. Hang out at a bookstore. Browse through your favorite sections. Many bookstores have cozy reading spots or a cafe. Enjoy these areas. Wear reading glasses. Maybe even buy a new book.

36. Go to a bakery. Walk to your nearest bakery and pick out some delicious treats.

37. Shoe paparazzi. Go around to different shoe stores and take pictures with the ones that stand out. Maybe even buy a new pair if you find a really good deal. 

38. Up on the Roof. All I gotta say for this one is do what you must.

39. Yours, mine, and ours yard sale. I found this idea at this website. Need some extra money? Need to get ride of a couple things? Divide the things you want to sell into three piles: wife, husband, and both. Add price tags to each item using three different colors. For example, Pink=wife, Blue=husband, and yellow=both. Then, next time it's good weather, host a yard sale outside your house/apartment and see how much you can sell! When items are purchased, take the price sticker off and put them in separate piles. At the very end, add up the proceeds and whoever sold the most wins! (Either the most in dollar amount or the most items.) The winner gets to plan (or choose not to plan) the next date. 

40. Go for a test drive. Head to your nearest car dealership and test-drive the car of your dreams. If you don't have a car, maybe you'll find a car you're actually interested in. (I would personally be too scared to drive a fancy car I can't afford, but it sounds fun!)

41. DIY drive-in theater. Set up a projector outside (or bring your laptop if you don't have a projector) and watch a movie. To make things even more fun, find the biggest box you can (see if someone just bought a new refrigerator and doesn't need the box anymore) and turn it into a car. Sit in the box while you watch the movie. Add paint and plates for wheels to make it even more legit. 

42. Snow cones. If it's summer time, then there is bound to be a snow cone shack somewhere nearby. Go and get one if you have't already. Maybe try a new flavor. Add ice cream to the bottom. 

43. Build something together.  This could be anything! Legos, sundaes, pizzas, a bookshelf, a bear at Build-A-Bear, etc. 

44. Golf it up. Drive to your nearest golf course and practice your driving skills on the driving range. See how far you can hit the balls. See how good your aim is and aim for the range pickers. (Those guys inside the little carts)

45. Go see a play. Some plays are expensive, but see if you can find a cheap one that sounds interesting. Ammon and I went and saw Wait Until Dark and it was awesome! I want to say it was only $10 a ticket at the Covey Center in Provo. 

46. Canvas painting. Go to the store and buy yourself some canvases. (About $3 each) Don't forget to pick up some paints. Get the colors that you think you'll need. Go sit somewhere out in nature and paint what you see. If the weather is cold, find a picture you like (from a calendar, off the internet, one you took yourself) print it, and then try and copy it.

47. Refashion your old clothes. Sick of your some of your clothes? Refashion them by using RIT dye, acrylic paint, or by using fabric pens. Here's one that I want to try:
I found this idea here

48. 50 States Quarter Collection. Spend the whole night trying to get all 50 states. Do whatever it takes. Pay for everything in cash that night. Scope the parking lots. Trade in a few dollar bills for quarters at gas stations or grocery stores. Look in your car or around your house. Raid your neighbors house if you have to! (actually don't do that). Have fun. To make it more legit, buy a book to hold all of your quarters. 

49. Thrift Store Outfit Agreement. You and your date will make an agreement to wear whatever the other picks out for you at your local thrift store. Each person can only spend a certain amount. ($5-$10) and only has a certain amount of time to find an outfit. Once the time is up, purchase your "new" outfits and show them to each other. Then head to the bathroom where you will be required to change into them. The rest of the night, you must wear your new outfit. Go to dinner or bowling or dancing. 

50. Pet Store. Visit a pet store together. This is usually good for stirring up warm fuzzy feelings. Restrain yourself from buying, however, unless you’re really ready for a new family member. Talk about any pets you had as a child.

51. Go swimming. Depending on the weather, go swimming inside or outside. Race each other. See who can do the coolest jump off the diving board. See who can hold their breathe the longest. See who can get the most pruned. Play a water game you played as a kid. 

52. VHS it up. Go to your nearest thrift store and buy a few VHSs. (They're only $1) Watch ones you've never seen before or the ones you loved as a kid. 

53. Toy guns. Hit up the toy aisle at your nearest grocery store. See if you can find the cheap dart guns. Buy two of them. Practice hitting random things in the house or create a war zone. Ammon and I did this one and it was a blast! Watch an action movie afterwards. Or an episode of Psych. Detective Lassiter would be so proud. 

54. Fly a kite. If it's windy outside, see how high you can get your kite. If you have two kites, have kite wars and see which kite survives the longest. (This totally means you can get aggressive.)

55. Go treasure hunting. Spend a Saturday morning going to various yard sales. See what kind of treasure you can find! 

56. Go to the zoo. If you haven't been to the zoo together, or it has been a while, take the time to go! Take pictures. Eat ice cream. Buy a souvenir. Learn as much as you can. Have fun. 

57. Kid creativity. When you were a kid, you most likely loved doing art with the simplest tools. Go to your local grocery store where there are tons of cheap, art supplies to choose from. Buy chalk and trace each other. Or create a masterpiece everyone will stop to look at. Buy play-dough and create a city. Buy some tie-dye and make some interesting designs.  

58. Go real shooting. Buddy up with friends who have guns or take your own if you have some. Drive somewhere you are sure is a safe spot to go shooting. Bring clay pigeons, empty cans or bottles, targets, books, or anything else you can think of to shoot. Get all of your frustrations out. Practice your aim. 

59. DIY Marble Run. Save up all of your paper towel rolls and toilet paper rolls for a week or two. (Or a month if you want more materials to work with). Buy yourself some acrylic paint, painter's tape, and some marbles. Once you have gathered all of your supplies, get to work and start making a marble run! See where your creativity gets you. Add dominoes in the mix. 

This Website has a cool example. 

60. Go ice skating. If there's an indoor ice skating rink, then it doesn't matter what the weather is! Go ice skating and see how fast you can go. See if you can spin or skate on one foot. Hold hands while skating. Push each other. See how much ice you can gather on your shoe and then throw it at each other. (My personal favorite.) Get some hot chocolate (or a chocolate candy bar if it's summer) afterwards. 

61. Country dancing. Whether you're an expert or a novice, this could be really fun. If you get there and decide you hate it- no problem- pick something else to do and talk about never doing that again! (I guess I'm thinking about what might happen if Ammon and I actually did this one. haha)

62. Art Museum. I live in Provo so I am surrounded by tons of art museums/exhibits. The great thing is that they are almost always free. Go to one and talk about the ones you love or hate. 

Pricey dates. 

63. Paint Your Own Pottery. Find your nearest ceramic studio where you can paint your own masterpiece and then they fire it up for you. Ammon and I love to go to Color Me Mine once a year on my birthday. I could spend hours there. Hunger is the only thing that can ever get me to leave. 

64. Indoor Rock Climbing. Unless you get a good deal, this one can be a little pricey. However, one day I would like to do this with Ammon. See if you can climb to the top on all the levels. Apply your experience to real life. Talk about enduring to the end. Or just have fun! 

Absolutely Free Dates:

65. Long boarding. If you live in Utah, then you're bound to know someone who owns a long board or two. Ask if you can borrow theirs (or just use your own if you already own one) and take it for a spin. Ammon and I like to go up Provo Canyon. Sometimes it's fun sharing one for the two of us. We really have to work as a team. 

66. Do what kids do. Do something silly that reminds you of your childhood. Climb a tree together, catch lightning bugs, or feed some ducks.

67. Star Gazing. Try star gazing in your own back yard or out in the country. Just bring a blanket and gaze upwards together. If you’re the scientific type, you might get a star map and try to identify constellations. If you're the creative type, make up your constellations and see if you can find it again next time you go star gazing. 

68. Bike ride. Go for a long bike ride. Even if biking is your means of transportation every day and you're getting sick of it, try biking down a road/path you've never been down before. Take pictures. Try and get your tires to touch. Hold hands while biking. Bike with your arms in the air. Try and do a pop-up wheelie. Get creative with your bike.

69. People Watch. Go to a public place (a train station, the mall, airport lobby, etc.) and people watch. Make up stories about the people who pass you, as if you’re writing a novel. If you see someone who looks sad or distressed say a prayer or lend a hand.

70. Slack-Lining. Find someone who has a slack-line or pull out yours if you have one. Find a park and set it up. See how good you can get. Try and do tricks or for the uncoordinated, try and see if you can take at least a few steps. 

71. Go for a hike. (Indoor or Outdoor.) If you live near a canyon or mountain, go hiking. Find a groomed trail, or bush-whack it. If you don't live near any hiking areas or if it's cold outside, find a tall building and hike up the stairs. Wear backpacks filled with food and water-bottles. See if you can get on top of the roof. Have a picnic.

Spiritual/Selfless Dates:

72. Help your city look better. Walk around your city and pick up any garbage you see. Weed a patch of grass that could use it. Rake leaves. Shovel snow. Do anything that helps your city look better. (Rather than just always walking past it and complaining.)

73. Homeless. Purposely see how many homeless people you can run into and give them food. Volunteer at a soup kitchen. Give away a nice coat you don't need anymore.

74. Heart attack. I used to do this all the time when I was a teenager. Bake some cookies or any other delicious treats you think someone might like. Cut out as many hearts as your hands can take and write nice things on the hearts. When it gets dark, sneak over to someone's house who needs a little extra love and cover their door step with hearts and treats. Knock on their door and run! Feel free to hide nearby so you can hear their reaction. But don't get caught! 

75. Temple. Visit your nearest temple. (Or drive to a far away one) Go inside or just enjoy the grounds. Talk about bettering yourself. Talk about your future goals together. Kiss. Hold hands. Enjoy the beauty of the temple. 

Holiday/Seasonal Dates: 

76. Corn Maze. During the Fall, find a corn maze and wander through it. Night time is the most fun. Getting lost is part of the adventure. Ponder how your experience may mimic times in your life together when you felt lost, found each other, or found your way through a difficulty together. No corn mazes in your area? Search out a labyrinth. Many retreat centers have them.

77. Pumpkin Carving. If it's almost Halloween, then you most definitely need to carve some pumpkins. There are many different things you can carve. Not big into artsy stuff? No problem. Just carve a simple face or a phrase. Bake the seeds and enjoy your pumpkin at night. 

78. Christmas Lights. Go see the coolest Christmas lights you can find. Too cold to go outside? Just look at them through your car window while sipping some delicious hot chocolate. 

79. Gingerbread houses. If it is winter time, this is a must. See who can make the tallest house. Or the coolest house. Or make a castle. See if you can make Hogwarts, the Eiffel tower, or any other famous structure that you can think of! 

80. Build a Snowman. If you live somewhere it snows then you have to make a snowman at least once. Sometimes it's cold and you don't feel like making one. However, if the snow is just right, and you wear the right clothing, I'm sure you'll get into it. Here's one Ammon and I made right outside our apartment: 

What dates have you loved? What are some variations of the ones I have listed?


  1. Leah,
    Rhett & I just read through this entire list, you two are soooo creative and we are definitely going to use this as a reference.
    Double date soon?
    xo Bre'an

  2. You guys are the best! We also just read through the entire list. So excited to try some!! :)

  3. This is pretty legit, nice list Leah. I need to get a date night set up for Matt and I, maybe when life clams down a bit and is back to "normal"

  4. How fun! You are WAY more creative than I can get us to be :-P Thanks for sharing!

  5. Done a lot of these but have a lot still to do. Especially the long boarding!


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