5 Creative Date Ideas In Your Hometown That Aren't Boring At All
It seems like every lead character in teen movies can’t wait to graduate high school and move as far away as possible from their hometown. The truth is, unless your hometown is like the one in Footloose, where dancing and rock 'n roll are strictly prohibited, it’s probably not that bad. It’s more likely that it will always hold a special place in your heart, even if you have to try really hard to think of creative date ideas in your hometown every time you visit.
If you still live in your hometown or you've recently moved back, you might be worried that there’s nothing exciting to do there and, if there is, that you’ve already done it. But hometown dates are actually the best kinds of dates. The whole thing is authentic and simple, just like the town you’ve grown almost too accustomed to.
I learned this the hard way when I moved away from home to an entirely different country and became more homesick than I had ever been in my life. At college, I would count down the days to my next flight home, when I would finally see my hometown boyfriend and we could finally do all the cute date ideas I spent months dreaming of. Were there tons more things to do and see in my college town? I went to college in Miami, Florida, so yes, absolutely! But, honestly, I would still take a picnic in the park near my childhood home over a night of raging on South Beach.
Here are five more creative date ideas you can try in your hometown that aren’t totally boring.
1. Go on a food tour of your neighborhood.
Most towns are known for at least one food that is unequivocally their own. Maybe your town boasts of the best donuts on every corner or maybe it’s known for an oddly specific sandwich that no one anywhere else has ever heard of. Whatever it is, you should definitely try it once from every vendor in town — yes, all on the same day because you’re here for a good time, not a long time.
Before you argue that your town is lame because its only food options are fast-food outlets, know that this only enhances the quality of the tour. You and your date can challenge yourselves to eat at least one item — like fries — from every fast-food outlet in your hometown, keeping score of which place is the best and why. Bonus points for every place with a drive-thru.
The best part about this date, other than the guilt-free gluttony, is that it truly will only be fun if you’re a local who knows their way around town. You’ve been training your whole life for a date like this.
2. Go see a double feature.
If your hometown is like mine, the first IMAX theater — or any luxury theater for that matter — opened early enough for it to be your high school make-out spot but not so long ago that it was the first theater you attended as a child.
Although many of the more traditional movie theaters have since shut their doors, you can probably find at least one in every town showing a classic like The Parent Trap. If you’re lucky, it’ll be a double feature (two movies for the price of one) and, if you grew up in the greatest town ever, it will also be a drive-in. Sorry, but dates are automatically better if you never have to leave your car.
3. Visit your town’s most clichéd tourist attraction.
OK, I’m willing to bet you’ve never been here and, if you have, you haven’t been back since the middle-school field trip that was the reason for your visit. Pretend you and your partner are new to the area and treat yourselves to all the cheesy souvenirs you can buy. Take tons of photos and mail them, along with postcards of your town, to your friends who live far away. I also recommend mailing these to friends who live right in your hometown for a good laugh.
4. Go on a photo scavenger hunt at the mall.
A photo scavenger hunt involves a list of specific people, places and objects that you have to complete. The items are usually ridiculous, like a photo of you shaking hands with a statue, but it’s a fun way to see a place you’ve already been to hundreds of times. You can download themed lists from Pinterest or make up your own. Upload the photos to Snapchat or Instagram as you go along to keep track of all the items you’ve checked off your list. This is also a fun date idea to try with other couples since the competition is bound to bring you and your partner closer together.
5. Have a bonfire.
There’s just something about bonfires that makes them the perfect backdrop to any date. Whether you do this at the beach or use the fire pit in your parents’ backyard, you and your partner will immediately move closer together — for the ‘gram, of course. Once you’ve got the fire going, all you need now are some blankets, a Spotify playlist to set the mood, and something to drink or snack on. You can roast marshmallows, drink hot chocolate, or toast with a couple glasses of wine.
Even though you love to rag on your hometown with your friends, you can’t deny that there are things about it you'll always love and miss. At this point in your life, your hometown is probably where you’ve lived the longest, made the most memories, and learned the most about yourself.
Coming up with fun, creative date ideas in your hometown shouldn’t be impossible. If it was good enough for your first kiss, it’s good enough for your 256th.
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