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Adult Time: Unique Date Ideas

Hello and welcome to “Adult Time” – a tiny blippit of adult-centric blog posts because, in case we get too lost in the world of raising children, we have to remember that we are people too. And we deserve time for ourselves…and each other.

I’m starting this series with a collection of date ideas (a date? What IS that!?), many unique to the Minneapolis metro area. Check out this quick list of ten ideas to get out, reconnect, and just be together. Kid. Freaking. Free.


BOULDERING PROJECT & PRYES BREWING

Minneapolis Bouldering Project
1433 West River Rd N, Minneapolis, MN 55411

Pryes Brewing Company
1401 West River Rd N, Minneapolis, MN 55411

If you haven’t visited Minneapolis Bouldering Project yet, I highly recommend you spend a couple hours there. You’ll push your limits and climb and fall and laugh and feel strong, then feel weak, then feel tired. It’s awesome – and it’s a wonderful way to spend some time together as a couple. None of the walls in MBP are taller than 15 feet and everything you fall on to is squishy and soft. No reservations are necessary – just show up and enjoy!

Know what’s right next door to Minneapolis Bouldering Project in Northeast? Pryes Brewing Company – a taproom on the river with a large outdoor beer garden, indoor seating, and some really good pizza. Oh, and delicious beers, duh. I could spend a long time here sampling their sours and hazy IPAs. And a good beer really DOES taste yummy after an active rock-climbing adventure.

WACONIA WINE & LLOVABLE LLAMAS

Schram Vineyards Winery and Brewery
8785 Airport Rd, Waconia, MN 55387

Carlson’s Llovable Llamas
8380 County Rd 10 E, Waconia, MN 55387

One of my very favorite winery/brewery combos is Schram Vineyards Winery and Brewery in Waconia. So when we date day here, I’m a very happy camper. With indoor (and lots of super beautiful outdoor) seating options, and a huge variety of tasty beverages, you can overlook the lake and sit amidst the grapes and really enjoy the quiet or the conversation. Try the Bonfire wine – it’s one of the best!

Then – if you’ve had the foresight to make a reservation – head over to Carlson’s Llovable Llamas, a short 5-minute drive away. You’ll want to pick your day and time on their website to visit the farm – cost is $17/person. When you’re there, you can walk a llama on a lead, pet and brush them, even see baby llamas if you time it right. It’s unique if nothing else.

THE DOCK & GONDOLA ROMANTICA

The Dock Stillwater
425 Nelson St E, Stillwater, MN 55082

Gondola Romantica
425 Nelson St E, Stillwater, MN 55082

If you can get a table on the patio of The Dock Stillwater restaurant, you find yourself sandwiched between two historic bridges on the St. Croix River. Here you can have your “classic dinner date” with deliciously fancier foods, a unique cocktail, all amongst a beautiful background with a bustling brick-paved street behind you for some after-dinner shopping or people watching.

As if the dinner wasn’t romantic enough, did you know you can ride a gondola on the St. Croix in the summer months? Well, you can. And you can bring your own bottle of wine, charcuterie trays, whatever trips your fancy. Go online to the Gondola Romantica website and select your package and time. Warning: this is not a cheap excursion. A 45 minute cruise is $119 for a party of two. An hour is $149. But hey, it’s cheaper than flying to Venice.

LIVE SHOW OR SPORTING EVENT

Know what’s great about where we live? There is NO shortage of live events for every area of interest. Check out the following event venues to see what is playing there for your date night. Try something new. See a ball game. Listen to an acoustic band. Watch a Broadway musical. Give opera a try! Who knows? You might fall in love with more than just your date (opera….I’m implying that you might fall in love with opera).

Orpheum Theater
Minneapolis

The Ordway
St. Paul

Target Center
Minneapolis

Brave New Workshop
Minneapolis

US Bank Stadium
Minneapolis

MN Orchestra
Minneapolis

Dakota Jazz Club
Minneapolis

Guthrie Theater
Minneapolis

Varsity Theater
Minneapolis

LUCE LINE BIKING & BREWERY

Luce Line State Trail (at Medicine Lake East)
1740 E Medicine Lake Blvd, Plymouth, MN 55441

Luce Line Brewing
12901 16th Ave N, Plymouth, MN 55441

If being outside and active is a solid date night for you, pack up your bikes and head to East Medicine Lake Beach where you can park in the lot and hop on your bikes heading west towards the Luce Line Trail. This trail is serene and clean and safe and feels like it just keeps going and going and going. You can choose where to stop along the path, but our favorite is Luce Line Brewing.

You can also hop on the trail at various other spots, including this one in Plymouth or this one in Maple Plain.

Want a longer ride? Maybe consider hopping on the Dakota Rail Trail just south of Luce Line and head through Spring Park for dinner at the Minnetonka Drive-in or a patio beverage at Back Channel Brewing Co.

WAY COOL COOKING SCHOOL & ROUND LAKE

Way Cool Cooking School
16544 W 78th St, Eden Prairie, MN 55347

Round Lake Park
16691 Valley View Rd, Eden Prairie, MN 55346

If you can plan ahead, you can snag an adult cooking class at Way Cool Cooking School in Eden Prairie for the culinary category of your choice. Yes, these classes are a little pricier but they are an awesome way to bond – because bonding over food is the best way to bond! You can see and book upcoming cooking classes online here.

After you’ve cooked and stuffed your faces, you can walk it off a minute away at Round Lake Park. At only 1 mile around, you will walk among flowers, playgrounds, a splash pad and skate park, picnic areas – just lots of life and happy people. Walk the loop as many times as you’d like and

FIRED UP CLAY & POCKET SQUARE DISTILLERY

Fired Up Studios
1000 Boone Ave N Suite #380, Golden Valley, MN 55427

Pocket Square Cocktail Lounge
7530 N 42nd Ave, Minneapolis, MN 55427

If you’re feeling artsy, consider signing up for a “Clay Date” at Fired Up Studios in Golden Valley. This is a 2-hour class (priced at $80/person) and you will learn to throw on a potter’s wheel, get a little dirty (not like “Ghost” dirty if ya know what I mean), and pick up your finish fired piece 2 weeks later. Classes are for 18+.

After you clean up, hit up a fun and local hot spot for a dinner or drink (many N/A cocktails available). Try Pocket Square Cocktail Lounge in New Hope or Miltons in Crystal or (my personal favorite) Marna’s in Robbinsdale.

WABASHA STREET CAVES & STARCADE

Wabasha Caves
215 Wabasha St S, St Paul, MN 55107

Starcade + Bad Penny Pinball
928 7th St W, St Paul, MN 55102

Start the date with a tour at the Wabasha Street Caves in St. Paul. You can choose their generic 1-hour historic cave tour, or a specialty tour (I’ve always wanted to do the Gangster Tour). All events are listed on their website.

When the tour is over, head across the river to Keg & Case Market where you’ll find Starcade + Bad Penny Pinball. Whoop it up with some retro video games (for a cheap all-day play rate of $15) and then cruise Keg & Case for some shopping, a beer at Clutch Brewing, a grilled cheese at O’Cheeze, a scoop of cookie dough at Dough Dough, or time your date so you’re there for live music in the yard, an art vendor display, or a car show (Event list is here.)

ACME COMEDY & B.A.D SPEAKEASY

ACME Comedy Co.
708 N 1st St, Minneapolis, MN 55401

B.A.D. Speakeasy
1401 West River Rd N, Minneapolis, MN 55411

Like to laugh? Who doesn’t? That’s why a date night at ACME Comedy Co. in Northeast Minneapolis is the perfect spot to keep your night light and happy. They host some great comedians (for cheap) and open mic nights (for free) and they even have a dinner and show package deal for under $40.

Then get a little fancy by slinking in to a local speakeasy…open late. Romantic, mysterious, a little bit sexy. B.A.D. Speakeasy is a super quick drive from ACME and has reservations available til midnight. Just go to their funky/deceiving website and click the Request options (don’t be scared) and it will eventually take you to an Open Table reservation link. I promise.

Want a speakeasy with the full red light alley and everything? Check out the Back Bar at Young Joni. They accept walk-ins as well as reservations and serve some yummy food + cocktails.

HUNT AND GATHER & THE PARKWAY THEATER

Hunt & Gather
4946 Xerxes Ave S, Minneapolis, MN 55410

The Parkway Theater
4814 Chicago Ave, Minneapolis, MN 55417

Feeling eclectic on your date night? Consider a night in South Minneapolis visiting funky local stores. One of the most unique is Hunt & Gather, a self-proclaimed “kooky, fresh, and unusual” place to shop. Need an old doll head? How about some vintage records? Cake trays? Wrapping paper? Magazines from the 1950s? This is your place.

When you’ve finished shopping, go see a flick or live show at The Parkway Theater. In the summer, they often have special Blockbuster showings of classic movies. The theater is from 1931 and still plays its films on 35mm.

Note: You can grab dinner along the route at one of these AMAZING restaurants – we love them both – George & the Dragon and Broder’s Pasta Bar.

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1 Comment

  • Reply
    Brian H.
    04/10/2024 at 5:28 pm

    Thanks for the suggestions! We are new to the area & will check out a few of these!

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