Whether you’re married or single, these cheap date ideas — $40 or less — will keep the spark alive in your relationship.
Poetry and Coffee
When it comes to date nights, the Urban Grind Coffee House is a true value, as are most really good coffee houses. I also enjoy San Francisco Coffee House. But here’s where Urban Grind separates itself: live poetry slams, ice cream, music and even game night. Four of my favorites all in one. To make sure I wasn’t alone, I did a quick search for reviews on Yelp, and discovered there are plenty of other people who give the place high marks. For a first date or one of dozens, it provides a good atmosphere and even better, good prices. It’s located at 962 Marietta St.
Wine and Dine
Have you ever wondered which wine to pair with your dinner? Or maybe you don’t really care that much; rather, you just like the idea of enjoying a glass of wine that tastes good, with delicious food. No matter which camp you’re in, this is the kind of event designed with you in mind. WineStyles in Snellville is hosting a BYOF — bring your own food event — on Friday, Oct. 16. You bring your own food, and they’ll sell you in an inexpensive bottle of wine to go with it, along with providing the live music on the patio. So, yes, you’re paying for your own food. And you’re even paying for the wine. But they’ll tell you which wines would be best and set the mood for romance as well.
Many wine stores have free tastings, often on Saturday afternoons, like this one on Oct. 17 at The Wine Cellars in Smyrna. During the evenings, tastings are affordable and most often come with cheese and fruit, or other light appetizers.
NASCAR — Behind the Scenes
If you’ve ever tried to get down to Atlanta Motor Speedway on race day, you know how completely overwhelming it can be. This isn’t anything like that. Any time there is not a race, the speedway is open to the public for tours. The tours include a brief track history, a visit to Petty Garden, a tour of one of the track’s luxury suites and look inside the garages and Victory Lane, and two laps in the Speedway van around the 1.54-mile track the drivers use. Of course, you’ll want to call ahead for hours and details before driving down to Hampton. But once you’re there, it will be worth the $5 adult admission.
So you think you’re funny?
How willing would you be to make a clown of yourself on stage — in front of your date? It takes courage, of course. Maybe you’re better off taking jabs at those a little more seasoned taking part in open mic nights at the comedy theater, Punchline. It’s free on Wednesday nights when you use the promo code, ‘Happy.’ Call before going to make sure the promotion has not run out. Even if it has, you can still get in for $10 per person. Over at Whole World Improv, admission is “pay what you can” on Thursday nights. It’s a limited promotion to check to make sure it hasn’t expired before going. Friday night shows are $21 each, which makes it $2 more than our $40 budget. I don’t mind that minor squeeze. In addition to the improv, you get a free chair massage and a wine tasting.
No diamonds, but plenty of gold
Diamonds are a girl’s best friend, but gold isn’t far behind. Naturally, it makes sense to take your date to the Fernbank Museum of Natural History’s ‘Gold’ exhibit. There’s the history of the precious medal, the wide variety of uses and the sheer beauty, all on display for visitors. But what makes this an even better date is you can now enjoy both the exhibit and the Martinis & IMAX feature on Friday nights through Nov. 27, for one price. A special film exhibit called the “Golden Oldies” will run through the length of the exhibit and is only $7. The featured films (which are not in 3D) are:
10 p.m. Oct. 16: “Austin Powers in Goldmember”
10 p.m. Oct. 23: “Goldfinger”
8 p.m. and 10 p.m. Oct. 30: “Beetlejuice,” for Fright Night
10 p.m. Nov. 6: “The Goonies,” for Pirate Night
10 p.m. Nov. 27: “Saturday Night Fever,” for Solid Gold Night
Two IMAX films, ‘Wild Safari: A South African Adventure,’ and ‘Van Gogh: Brush with Genius,” will be shown, but will be pre-empted at 10 p.m. for the Golden Oldies feature films. The Entertainment Stimulus Package brings the price for those down to $12 for adults, but there’s no official word on when that ends. The regular adult admission is $15. If you’re only interested in the exhibit, tickets are $7.
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