7 ways to safely celebrate Valentine’s Day during a pandemic

Valentine that says: Would you like Toby my valentine? with a picture of toby

Valentine’s Day is just days away, but the COVID-19 pandemic has put a wrinkle in the typical ways lovebirds celebrate. If you’re looking to sweep your sweetheart off their feet, here are seven safe ways to spend Valentine’s Day with your loved one.

1. Eat your dinner outside

Instead of dining indoors this year, consider getting takeout and going somewhere else. Visit Macon has some great local suggestions for places with outside seating, along with fine dining and family-friendly restaurants. With a little preparation, you can surprise your date with a nice picnic or table set up for two — such as in the pavilion at Tattnall Square Park or the fountains next to Willingham Hall — without being surrounded by too many people.

2. Cuddle up with a romantic movie

Movie night is always a great date night! With just the two of you, set up your own home theater with popcorn, soda and candy, and prepare to snuggle up under the blankets. If you’d prefer a more socially distanced movie night, browser extensions like Teleparty let you stream together even if you can’t be in person. If you’re struggling for an idea, some go-to films available on Netflix are “To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before,” “The Kissing Booth” and “Set It Up.”

3. Create your own scavenger hunt

A scavenger hunt can be as elaborate or as simple as you want. You can rope your friends into helping and send your partner around town or campus to find love notes about past relationship milestones. Or keep it simple by finding stuff in your room and winning a prize from the other person. Mercer has plenty of different places to hide your clues, such as the Jesse Mercer statue in the historic quad, the pews in Newton Chapel or Tarver Library. Just make sure you’re not disrupting any classes!

4. Make each other a handmade gift

Nothing screams love like a homemade present created just for your partner. Depending on where your talent lies, this could be a poem, a picture or any kind of craft. Not only is it romantic, but it’s something that they can keep to remind them of your love for them. The 567 Center hosts various art classes throughout the week and QuadWorks will be making valentines 5-7 p.m. Feb. 12 on Cruz Plaza.

5. Explore the great outdoors

Getting outside is a great way to charm your partner safely. Depending on your personal lifestyles, this could be anything from stargazing to hiking to bike riding at a nearby park like Amerson River Park or Tattnall Square Park. Walk over to the M. Diane Owens Garden on campus to watch the fountain or go to a nearby playground to show off your playful side.

6. Get in the kitchen

The fastest way to someone’s heart is through their stomach but especially when you cook together. Regardless of how good of a cook or baker you are, whatever you make will taste even sweeter because you did it together. Besides, if all else fails, pizza makes for a fun date night. If you’re still not sure, take advantage of the Caf’s chocolate chip cookie recipe and enjoy!

7. Be a tourist

Regardless if you’ve lived in Macon for three months or three decades, head downtown and find your favorite places. There’s always hidden shops to find and old classics to enjoy. Try scheduling a Rock Candy tour, visiting the Gallery West, booking a Historic Home tour or checking out the museum at Mercer Music at Capricorn.

With any luck, these ideas will help you and your loved one celebrate your relationship this year. Besides, as long as you’re together, it’ll be a perfect Valentine’s Day no matter what.


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