Break Up The Monotony

Escape rooms, ax-throwing, gardening, trivia—there are  plenty of ways to spice up your date nights

When was the last time you and your significant other spiced up date night? If dinner and a movie is your go-to routine, maybe it’s time to explore new territory. And how about those group get-togethers? Do you and your friends always settle for the same places and do the same things?

Why not break these monotonous habits and try something out of the box? Create art, bust a move, escape (literally). Take a look at these ongoing and upcoming area events, and try one or more with the ones you love most.

Ax Throwing at Chop Shop KSQ
Head to The Creamery in Kennett Square and learn how to throw an ax at Chop Shop KSQ. And when you’re finished wielding large, sharp objects, grab a brew, check out the local artist exhibits, catch a band, and immerse yourself in the rich history of Kennett Square. Newly reimagined, The Creamery is now open year-round and even lets you bring your pup along while you enjoy a plate of Killer Mac and Cheese in the outdoor bar and gardens. chopshopksq.com.

Tour Delaware Breweries
First State Brew Tours wants you to experience the best of Delaware’s craft-beverage community—responsibly, of course. With fun and safety in mind, FSBT will do the driving while you choose from one of three tours and visit three breweries on each tour. The bus picks you up, drops you off, and provides snacks, water, and coolers for when you want to take home some of your favorite brews. Tours are conducted the first three weekends of the month, with one route per weekend. Taste your way across Delaware’s craft beer companies, and take your date on each tour. firststatebrewtours.com.

Get Trapped Together
For an engaging and thrilling adventure, try an Escape Room. You and your date or team will be locked in a room; then, using clues, puzzles, and each other, you will attempt to find your way out. The rooms have themes, like Sherlock Holmes, Pirates of the Caribbean, and Shaken, Not Stirred. Each group is considered a private booking, so you’ll always know everyone on your team. Be prepared for an hour of challenges, mystery, and a bit of frustration as you work together to escape the locked room! Visit Exodus Escape Rooms, with three locations in Delaware, and and Great Escape Delaware, both in Newark. Axxiomnewark.com and greatescapedelaware.com.

Dance The Night Away
Get your dancing shoes and visit The Queen in Wilmington for a DJ Dance Party. Upcoming: Latin music and ‘80s night in the next two weeks, a Guns N’ Roses tribute concert for Valentine’s Day, and a Backstreet Boys vs. *NSYNC party in March. The Queen also regularly hosts tributes to greats like Lynyrd Skynyrd, Nirvana and AC/DC. Plus, there’s the Drag Diva Brunch if you’re looking for a fun Sunday afternoon date. thequeenwilmington.com

Take an Art Walk In Wilmington
Cultivate your and your date’s inner art connoisseur along The Wilmington Art Loop. Held the first Friday of every month, the Art Loop is self-guiding, ever-changing, and always free. Make stops in galleries, museums, unique spaces, and studios to view the latest displays. Meet featured artists, enjoy delectable hors d’oeuvres, catch some music, and experience the creative pulse of downtown Wilmington together. Not sure how best to take in the exhibits? While there’s no right or wrong way to start the loop, catch the shuttle from the Delaware Center for the Contemporary Arts for easy navigation. This monthly event can be your new tradition. artloopwilmington.org

Show Off Your Smarts
Do you possess a vault of random knowledge that makes you the perfect secret weapon for trivia night? Then this is the date night idea for you, my friend. City Theater Company will be hosting Quizzo at Chelsea Tavern, including five rounds of mentally-taxing trivia in one exciting night, plus food and drinks for purchase. Get your friends, put your thinking caps on, and compete against other teams in a battle of wits. Combine powers with your true love, your friends, your co-workers, or all of the above, and see who’s the smartest. So, have you come up with a team name yet? facebook.com/CityTheaterCompany

Create A Piece of Art
Immerse yourselves in the carefully curated collection of artwork adorning the halls of the Delaware Art Museum, then take your plus one on a Clay Date. You heard us. Sip some wine in the ceramic studio and create your very own original piece of pottery. The museum will happily glaze your masterpiece when you’re finished. To further cultivate your creativity, there are events like the DelArt Museum Book Club, where the two of you can wax poetic about the most recent read, or you can attend a movie screening with a discussion session immediately following. delart.org

Photo Joe del Tufo

Try a Unique Dining Experience
In the past, gauchos (cowboys of the South American pampas) would skewer pieces of churrasco, slowly grill them over an open flame, then savor their smoky, delicious flavors. Churrascaria Saudades, Newark’s Brazilian steak house, is keeping this mouthwatering tradition alive with gaucho chefs, a wonderfully fresh salad bar, Brazilian side dishes, and signature cocktails. The cuts of meat are served tableside as part of the restaurant’s unique dining experience. Saudades can best be translated as “a deep emotional state of nostalgic longing for an absent something or someone.” You and your date are both going to have a deep sense of longing for this food when your one-of-a-kind meal comes to an end. eatsteaks.com.

Girls’ Day Out
Ladies, leave the men at home and grab your best gal pals for a few hours of luxurious pampering. The Spa At Montchanin Village will make all of the arrangements for a group spa day. Indulge in any one of their treatments—think massages, facials, and wraps—before kicking back in a plush robe and enjoying refreshing cucumber water and a glass of wine as you unwind and catch up. A special menu from the adjoining Krazy Kats restaurant is available and can be delivered to the spa, so you and your girlfriends can nosh in your robes. So glamorous. montchanin.com.

Plant An Indoor Garden
Does your home need a little sprucing up? Start by grabbing a pint at Midnight Oil Brewing Co. in Newark. Its thoughtfully crafted brews include seasonal Sweet Dreams Dopplebock and favorites like Midnight Porter. Then, elevate your date night and brewery experience by heading to one of their fun events, like a Terrarium Therapy workshop! This includes a private brewery tour, a beer flight, and plants! Carefully create your very own globe terrarium with the provided plants and materials. It’s a great date night idea; plus, you get to take home beautiful, hanging succulents that will infuse your home with some greenery. midnightoilbrewing.com.

Whip up something in a Cooking Class
Chef Mark Eastman, the owner of Chefs’ Haven, is formally trained by both the New England Culinary Institute in Vermont and his talented mother. He specializes in preparing soups, sauces, fish, and meat. Set a date for a cooking class and learn to create dishes such as an autumnal French dinner, fresh surf and turf, or all things bacon, using only the finest ingredients. During class, Chef Mark will instruct you on how to properly prepare food with chef-grade cutlery and help foster in you a love of cuisine. Take the skills you learn and apply them at home as you craft your next meal. chefshavende.com.

Enjoy Your Favorite Red (or White)
A good winery belongs in every date night schedule, and Chaddsford Winery is the one to frequent. As one of Pennsylvania’s most acclaimed wineries and an excellent reflection of the unique microclimate of the Mid-Atlantic, Chaddsford offers tastings and flights daily. But what you really don’t want to miss are the events. Murder Mystery Nights, Wine & Chocolate Pairings, and a Chili and Chowder Festival are just too much fun to pass up. To stay up on events, become a member and enjoy exclusive parties and free wine tastings. This is perfect for a weekend afternoon or a cozy evening out. chaddsford.com.

So, what do you think? Please comment below.