Cold weather can ruin many things, and dates are one of them. Snow and ice make it hard to go out and enjoy a nice day with a partner, but regardless of outside weather in Chicago, there’s always something to do. Whether it’s a holiday movie perfect date in mind or just a simple winter date, one of these ten ideas are bound to spark an idea for you.
#1: Ice skating in Millennium Park
Most of the fun things to do for a winter date are located downtown, including ice skating in Millennium Park. Located right next to The Bean, you and your partner can go into the rental place and rent a pair of skates for $13-15. Lockers are available inside to rent for a dollar inside the rental place. The ice rink has set times for it to be cleaned, however, when you rent your skates, the employees will tell you how much time there is before the next cleaning session.
#2: Chicago’s Art Institute
If in the mood for something more quiet and relaxing, Chicago’s Art Institute can be the perfect option. There are all sorts of sections from ancient, historical art to modern and contemporary art. Admission of the Institute ranges, but general admission is $25. The Art Institute is located in downtown Chicago, along with a few cafes and restaurants within walking distance. Food and drinks are not allowed in the institute, however, there is a small cafe within the institute to enjoy sandwiches, pastries and drinks.
#3: Adler Planetarium
The Adler Planetarium in Chicago is one of the greatest museums in the city, and if you or your partner take an interest in anything related to outer space, this place is the definition of a perfect date. It’s located downtown on Lake Shore Drive. General admission tickets are $19, and for children, tickets are just $8 and these include all exhibits within the museum. Tickets do vary, with more specifics available on the planetarium’s official website.
#4: The Immersive Van Gogh Exhibit
The Immersive Van Gogh Exhibit is a temporary attraction that leaves Chicago on February 11th, and it’s located right next to Lincoln Park. Tickets range from $40-$44 per person for general admission. The exhibit holds various activities to do and includes two different date night packages that can be arranged to make the date night absolutely perfect. As a warning though, date packages are terribly expensive, so I recommend sticking to general admission and enjoy the bar’s drinks and food along with the experience.
#5: Dinner on the 95th Floor
The Signature Room and Lounge is a restaurant located downtown at 875 Michigan Ave. It’s on the 95th floor of the building, including a fantastic view of Chicago and the lake. However, this place is on the much more expensive side, so it should be reserved for very special dates and anniversaries. Regardless, it’s still a good option when looking for something more special and intimate for you and your partner.
#6: Wine Brewing
For those of you who are 21 and older, there are plenty of wineries and breweries places all over Chicago where you and your partner can go in and make a custom beer or wine that fits your tastes perfectly. There are options to take a day to hand make the wine yourself, and there are places that’ll make them for you and have you include specific ingredients and processes along the way. Either way, you come back home with a bottle of custom beer or wine. For wine and beer making classes, I recommend visiting the official city winery website for more information.
For a little more active fun, WhirlyBall is the place for you. This facility, located at 1825 W. Webster Ave., combines multiple sports together along with other activities like laser tag and bowling and even pop up games you can enjoy. The place also has food and drink available for its patrons. Payment and reservations are done by the hour and range from activity to activity.
#8: Aire Ancient Baths
This is a more intimate, relaxing and baller-status place for a date. It’s an indoor bathhouse and spa, with a gorgeous interior and an atmosphere beyond relaxing. Aire Ancient Baths is located on 800 W. Superior St. There are multiple packages to choose from when booking a date. There are multiple packages that range in price, between $200 to a little over $1,000. The cheapest package is The Ancient Thermal Bath & 45-minute massage ($235.13) The most common and loved package is The Pampering Duo ($642.68).
#9: Garfield Park Conservatory
The Garfield Park Conservatory is located on 300 N. Central Park Ave. It’s a gorgeous garden and conservatory filled with all sorts of plants. It’s free and available to the public, but regardless, an online reservation is required in order to keep things tidy and organized due to COVID. Inside, there’s a gift shop with different kinds of souvenirs. Food and snacks are also available to purchase inside. It’s perfect for walking through to see all the plants in each area. There’s even a few koi ponds with koi fish and turtles scattered within the inside of the conservatory.
#10: Time-Out Market
Need a place for some fantastic food? The Time-Out Market is the perfect place. Located at 916 W. Fulton Market, the Time-Out Market is a place to sit down and order all sorts of food from multiple venues and restaurants located in the market. There’s also live shows that are occasionally brought to the Time-Out Market to enjoy as an audience. There’s no entry fee, and the food within the market is all decently priced.
While all these dates are perfect in their own little way, they all do have COVID regulations, and they vary from place to place. For more information, go to their respective websites to make sure you’re being as safe as possible.
By Sasha Gonzalez, Junior, Chicago High School for the Arts