These winter date ideas are sure to make you feel all warm and fuzzy inside no matter the temperature.

Image by Dusty Hoskovec Photography via Holidazzle

By Kyle Smelter

You've done it. You've sold yourself well enough to earn a first date with that boy/girl you've been talking to for the past few weeks. But after you’ve finished staring down at that crinkled piece of paper with 10 digits scribbled on it and you’ve come down from Cloud 9, thoughts of doubt start to slowly creep in and invade your brain. Should I get a haircut? What should we do? Should my mom pick out my outfit? Don’t worry. They’re probably having the same troublesome thoughts. Or maybe you’re a seasoned couple looking to find new ways to freshen things up, rather than dining out or seeing what’s new at the box office for the third time this month.

Either way, coming up with new and exciting date ideas—especially during a Minnesota winter—can be tougher than awkwardly filling an entire night with conversation. So as soon as you're done splashing your face with water, smiling, winking and finger-gunning yourself in the mirror, check out these winter date ideas across the Twin Cities. Even if it doesn't go well, these events will at least make for a memorable night. Go get 'em.

Music Under Glass

Sub-zero temps a little—maybe a lot—too cold for you? Then venture over to the Marjorie McNeely Conservatory at the Como Zoo for Music Under Glass where it’s always tropical and there isn’t a snowflake in sight. Visitors to this free, eight week concert series can treat their senses to the beautiful sights and smells of the many plant species while listening to live performances by Javier Matos, The Bad Companions, Café Accordion Orchestra and more.

Carriage Rides

The most cliché of our winter date ideas is also probably the most unique—going on a winter carriage ride and marveling at the dazzling Minneapolis skyline. The Hitching Company transports couples back in time with their horse-drawn carriage rides along the Mississippi River and through the streets of Minneapolis. Guests can take a 30 minute or hour-long tour and choose whether or not they would like their ride narrated by their driver as they clip-clop past landmark sites such as the Stone Arch Bridge and Guthrie Theater.

Wells Fargo WinterSkate

Lace up your skates and head to the historic castle-esque Landmark Center in downtown St. Paul for some outdoor ice skating fun at Wells Fargo WinterSkate. Now through Feb. 4, you can relive your hockey glory days, show off your inner Kristi Yamaguchi or Scott Hamilton, or take to the ice for the first time at one of the best winter date spots. Don’t have skates of your own? No problem. Skate rental is available for $4 per person, and the rink is also artificially chilled so you don’t have to worry about your date night melting away if Mother Nature doesn’t cooperate.


Make a trip to Loring Park for the new and improved Holidazzle. What was once just a holiday parade down Nicollet Mall in downtown Minneapolis with characters and floats covered from head to wheel in thousands of lights has turned into a holiday festival extravaganza and one of the best winter date ideas in the Twin Cities. Sample the local fare, sing along to live musical performances, or bring some chairs, blankets and hot cocoa to any of their movie nights. And don’t miss their fireworks displays on Fridays or Saturdays!


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