From Boise

Date ideasπŸ’˜

Published 4 months agoΒ β€’Β 10 min read

Hello friends! How are ya this week? Today I have a big ol list of date ideas for you. These may not all be brand new ideas, but I did choose them with specific criteria:

  • They can be done on any type of date, not just the romantic kind.
  • Most can be done for under $100.
  • These can mostly be done at anytime of the year, but I was thinking about fun things to do in this half winter, half spring weather.

Have fun out there, love birds <3

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Make something dates

Make something dates are perfect for romantic dates, friend dates, parent/kid dates... maybe even first dates?! Here's a few fun places to make something with someone:

​Clay Collective is a small studio on State Street that offers date night clay classes on Friday nights. It's $90/couple and you will both make something out of clay, start to finish!

​A Way With Clay is a paint your own pottery studio. Choose from one of 400 clay pieces (pot, bowl, vase, plate, garden gnome, etc) and then paint it however you want! They also have weekly classes.

​Boise Art Glass offers a variety of glass-blown art classes. Make a cute lil keepsake together!

​​Paint 'n Sip does painting classes several times a week. They offer walk-ins, open paint studio, and scheduled classes. Appointment or scheduled class recommended. It's in CHOW Food Hall, so super easy to make it a lunch/dinner date.

​Season + Taste is a cooking school in downtown Boise that offers allll kinds of classes for adults, families, kids, and teens to learn how to cook things like pies, pasta, different cuisines, and more. These are intimate classes and fill up quick, so it's recommended to book asap!

​Mad Cake Skills does cake and cupcake decorating classes at different wineries and breweries in Boise. You can also set up a private class!

​Lit & Co Candles does DIY candle making classes at all three of their shops: Hyde Park, State Street, and Indian Creek Plaza in Caldwell. Fun! You choose your own fragrance and vessel, then you learn to blend the soy wax and create a label for the bottom of your candle. You can do this anytime after 12pm!

​Maker Shop Boise has woodworking classes multiple days every week. You can learn to make all kinds of cool things like a floating shelf, cutting board, wooden spoons, bowls, jewelry box, wine rack, and so much more. How fun! These book out far in advance so check out the schedule now.

​A Succulent Day has a succulent potting bar available Wed-Fri from 3-5pm. You choose a 30min time slot, then choose your pot, plants, and then put it all together to create your own succulent arrangement. Fun!

Do something dates

​Golf, but the kind that doesn't take all damn day. Top Golf has the driving range, a 9-hole mini golf course, and food & drinks. Sockeye Brewing Alehouse (on 36th street) has a 9-hole putting course with a full bar and food menu. X-Golf Boise is an indoor golf stimulator complete with food, drinks, and easy parking.

​Treasure Valley Skate is the place to go for roller blading/skating. You can byo skates or rent there. It's really fun!

Play some games! Go to Idaho Pinball Museum, Realms Arcade, Spacebar, and Dave & Busters.

Rage Rooms, where you go into a room and break stuff. We have two: Ragers Smash & Axe (it also has axe throwing) on Fairview and Hammer Time (also has paint splatter, axe throwing & a shooting gallery) in Nampa. There's all kinds of things you can smash and all kinds of ways to smash.

Go dancing! Ochos in downtown Boise has Salsa & Bachata every Friday night, and Argentine Tango every 2nd Saturday of the month. The Buffalo Club in Boise has swing and line dance lessons Wed-Sat every week.

Flower farms are a super fun spring/summer date. You can build your own bouquet, take cute photos, and enjoy an afternoon or evening outdoors. You can do this at Lovely Hollow Farm, Mason Creek Farm, Hidden Hollow Farms, Blue Sky Flower Farm, and Lowe Family Farmstead.

See something dates

​Go see a movie! The Flicks is a indie movie theater in downtown Boise showing indie, foreign and art films. They also have Rick's Cafe American, which serves burgers, sandwiches, snacks, desserts, wine and beer and full espresso bar. ​Boise Spectrum has Edwards Cinema and CHOW Public Market. Dinner and a movie? Easy.

​Ballet Idaho is performing Anthology this week, Thursday Feb 8 through Sunday, Feb 11.

​Boise Philharmonic is performing The Cinematic Music of John Williams on Saturday Feb 17 at 1pm and 7:30pm, plus more performances coming up in March and April.

See a live theater performance at Stagecoach Theatre, Boise Contemporary Theatre, Boise Little Theater, Alley Repertory Theater, Boise Bard Players, Idaho Shakespeare Festival, ​Encore Theatre Company, ​Knock ’Em Dead Dinner Theater, ​or Music Theatre of Idaho.

​Watson's Cafe has a ton of different interactive events throughout the week, including trivia, murder mystery dinners, comedy dinners and more.

Comedy shows are fun and cheap date. Of course, refer to the comedy section in the Thursday newsletters for upcoming shows. Here's a few open mics that happen regularly: Mondays at Mad Swede (Cole Road); Wednesdays at The Handlebar at 8pm; Thursdays at Mad Swede (Downtown); Saturday at Mad Swede (Downtown).

Live music is always a good option in my book. Shrine Social Club, Treefort Music Hall, Neurolux, The Olympic, Knitting Factory, The Sapphire Room all have regular show calendars. To just drop in and hear some tunes, check Pengilly's Saloon, Heritage Social, or Sturmans. Another one to refer to my Thursday newsletters for.

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Celebrate Valentine's Day with a meal to remember at Anthony's Restaurant! Anthony's has a very special Valentine's menu featuring fresh Northwest seafood and seasonal sides.

Enjoy a Valentine’s Day Toast for Two, complete with 2 glasses of Domaine Ste Michelle Brut paired with four fresh oysters on the half-shell. Choose from three incredible entrees, including Fresh Wild Alaska King Salmon finished with champagne and rose peppercorn sauce and served with crasin pistachio rice pilaf and seasonal vegetables, rich & lemony Lobster Risotto, or the Filet Oscar crowned with fresh Dungeness crab and bearnaise and served with seasonal vegetables.

​Anthony's Valentine's Day menu is only available February 9-15. Reservations recommended.

Treat your valentine to a delicious date night at Anthony's.

Eat & drink something dates

Combine one of these restaurants with an activity from the above or just do a good ol fashioned food date. Here's some ideas:

Brunch dates

  • ​Nomad - a cozy little spot with a full breakfast + coffee/tea menu. Don't let the construction on Capitol Blvd deter you.
  • ​Capri - all day breakfast, baby! Amazing biscuits & gravy, giant pancakes, piping hot coffee. A true diner.
  • ​Sunshine Spice Bakery & CafΓ© - Afghan bakery & cafe with delicious & interesting food and drinks. Highly recommend.
  • ​Egg Mann and Earl - homemade diner breakfast where you really can't go wrong.
  • ​The Griddle - one of my faves, they have the best eggs benny! They also have 4 different locations.
  • ​BACON - I mean it's named after a breakfast food. Daily brunch menu, good bloody marys, big patio.
  • ​Rembrandts - fellow From Boise reader Andrew recommended this one. He says it's a romantic spot in Eagle for great brunch.

Lunch dates

  • ​Lemon Tree - the sammys are big enough to share and they have lots of veggie/vegan options.
  • ​A Cafe - one of my faves, they have really good salads, bowls, sammys, brunch, and yummy coffee drinks.
  • ​Basque Market - if you go on Wednesday or Friday at noon you can get fresh paella. Otherwise order a bunch of tapas and have a big ol snack lunch - my fave!
  • ​BoEx - a true hidden gem. Just trust me.
  • ​Tango's - get a few empanadas and some crinkle fries and you will have a good day.
  • ​Ansots - a lil Basque spot with authentic small plates and housemade chorizo.
  • ​Hugo's Deli - a good ol fashioned deli with huge sandwiches and amazing french fries.

Dinner dates

  • ​Amano - always, always good and worth the drive to Caldwell.
  • ​Alyonka Russian Cuisine - so cute and soo good. Definitely make a reservation because there's only 9 tables. Get the shuba appetizer and lemon mousse for dessert.
  • ​The Modern is one of my fave date night dinner spots. The food is always good, drinks hit the spot, it's intimate and cozy. Also easy to book a room if you want to make a staycation out of it!
  • ​Stagecoach Inn - did someone say halibut chunks? Stagecoach is the best for homemade steakhouse fare with strong drinks and saloon vibes.
  • ​KIN - amazing cocktails & mocktails, out of this world food, and different ways to try both. You can do one of their prix fixe dinners (a lil spendy but an experience), or you can get apps and a drink at the Art Haus Bar.
  • ​Wepa Cafe - a fun one with delicious Puerto Rican food. They take reservations.
  • ​Wild Plum - amazing food with rotating seasonal menus. Book a greenhouse dinner!
  • ​Kibroms Ethiopian - one of my faves and a fun eating experience.
  • ​Amina's African Sambusas - you gotta try authentic African cuisine. It's so good. Go when you've got some time to spare.
  • ​Brick 29 - hip spot in Nampa with local and seasonal pub food.
  • ​Eight Thirty Common - pub in downtown Meridian with awesome food and drinks. Every time I have been in the food, drinks & service have been amazing.

Grab a drink dates

Where you grab a drink depends on what kinda date you are going for. I'm a dive bar girl, but I know that sometimes grabbing a drink needs a sexy vibe so here's some of my favorite places:

  • ​Water Bear Bar - my fave cozy place to nook up with my lover and have a drink. They have so many options and creative drinks, plus it's all plant-filled and dark & moody.
  • ​Hap Hap Lounge - fun rooftop bar with cocktails & mocktails, usually have a late night DJ, plus lots of games and seating options. Huge patio when the weather is nice!
  • ​Thick As Thieves - it's a "speakeasy" which is that whole vibe but the drinks are truly phenomenal and always changing. Very dark & sexy. Reservation recommended.
  • ​Atlas Bar - small and cozy cocktail bar on 11th Street in downtown Boise. The lime coconut cocktail is one of my all time faves.
  • ​Ochos - intimate wine & cocktail bar with a giant patio filled with fire pits. You can go dancing upstairs too.
  • ​Spacebar - get a pitcher of beer and play some games!
  • ​Symposium - one of my fave dive bars. It's cheap as hell and divey and perfect.

Fresh air dates

Go skiing/snowboarding at Bogus Basin or make a day trip to Tamarack Resort or Brundage Resort in McCall. If you are a beginner, you can take lessons & rent gear from all of these resorts!

Go snowshoeing! I loveeee to crunch around on snowshoes and there's so many good places close to Boise. A few close to home options are Stack Rock and the Bogus Basin Nordic trails (Nordic day pass is $17-$24), which has some snowshoe specific trails. Bogus Basin also does guided snowshoe hikes, including full moon hikes!

Soak in a hot spring. Nothing like going for a soak this time of year. The Springs at Idaho City and Mountain Village Resort are easy because you can make a reservation. Undeveloped options are Kirkham Hot Springs, Gold Fork Hot Springs, Rocky Canyon Hot Springs (you have to wade across the river to reach this one), Bonneville Hot Springs, and Pine Flats. There's lots more obviously, depending on which way you are headed.

Go for a walk/hike. Going for a walk is an underrated date option. It's such a good way to talk & spend quality time together while getting fresh air & not spending any money! Some great hikes for this time of year: Cervidae Peak, Bethine Church River Trail, Rim Trail in SE Boise. MK Nature Center is fun to walk around and it's free. Idaho Botanical Garden is fun to stroll around, it's $12 for admission. Also the 12-mile Snake River Petroglyph Tour hike is a great full-day option.

Go for a drive. Pack a picnic and go find something cool! Some places I love to go explore: Celebration Park (there's a cool bridge here, hike to the top of a butte, and petroglyphs!), Snake River area (great bird watching), Bruneau Dunes State Park (play in sand), Blacks Creek Road (this is where we got engaged and saw a massive bald eagle - it's awesome), Owyhee Uplands Backcountry Byway, and Hagerman Fossil Beds National Monument are a few.

Ideas from you

  • Petra suggests a β€œGrab Bag Date," where one person totally surprises the other with something you normally wouldn’t do. You could literally make a grab bag with a few ideas on paper inside, have your partner pick one, then it’s actually a surprise for you both. Fun!
  • Andrew suggests going to the Farmer's Market then cooking a meal together using only ingredients that you found at the market. Love it!
  • Brittany suggests bougie Albertsons date night (you know, the fancy Albertsons on Broadway or Fairview). Get a drink at the bar, do your shopping as you sip, then go home and make something delightful together. Rummage through the leftover cheese basket in the cheese case. They put the tiny leftover cheese chunks in there and they're usually $2-$3. So you can try a whole bunch of fancy cheeses for cheap. Obsessed with this date idea!
  • Brittany also suggested getting bar top seats at Alavita and ordering the Battilardo, which is kind of like a charcuterie board but better. Yum.

Ok that's all I got for you today. What's your fave date spot??

Thanks for reading!

With love from Boise,






From Boise

by Marissa Lovell

A weekly newsletter & podcast about what's going on in Boise, Idaho. Every week we share stories about people, places, history, and happenings in Boise.

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