Single or in a relationship – Valentine’s Day can be a high pressure holiday. To help you out, we have come up with the best Valentine’s Day date (or non-date) ideas. Dine out at one of Downtown Indy’s best restaurants, see a parody of Fifty Shades of Grey with girlfriends or stay in with a bottle of wine. Whether you’re into dancing, dining or live music, here are the best things to do on Valentine’s Day in Downtown Indy.
Dine out, dance or do both
Get up and groove after dinner at the Love is All You Need Dinner Dance on Feb. 14 at The Rathskellar. This event includes a three-course meal starting at 6 p.m. followed by a live performance from Woomblies Rock Orchestra from 8 p.m. – midnight.
For some serious fun, head to the historic Fountain Square Theatre Building on Feb. 13 for Friday Night Swing Dance. Grab your significant other or bestie and take a dance lesson with Naptown Stomp at 7:30 p.m. then stay for live entertainment from 8:30pm – 11:30 p.m. with some of the hottest swing bands around.
If you prefer a more relaxing evening, visit The Propylaeum on Feb. 14 from 6:30 – 8:30 p.m. for dinner and a live performance with harpist Elizabeth O’Meara Ahlgrm. Choose from one of three packages ranging from $100 – $150 per couple.
Let’s get real: women love a gourmet dinner out on the town. And every woman I know loves roses. Be a good guy and give her both. Weber Grill is offering a special Valentine’s Day menu Feb. 13 – 15. The meal includes a choice of Atlantic salmon, surf and turf or New York strip plus chocolate dipped strawberries and a strawberry martini. Make your night out extra special by adding red roses to your table for $30 (put in your request when making reservations).
Other date-friendly dinner spots:
Bluebeard – This Fountain Square hot spot does not take reservations. That being said, I can say with 100% confidence: it’s worth the wait.
Chef Joseph’s at the Connoisseur Room – This restaurant almost always has live music going in the evening. Check the event page for special performances.
Harry & Izzy’s and St. Elmo Steak House – I joke that I could easily make a meal out of an order of the World Famous St. Elmo Shrimp Cocktail paired with a glass of wine. Don’t wait to make reservations at these Downtown Indy favorites.
Milano Inn – The restaurant’s reservation list is filling quickly, but if you are lucky enough to snag a table, order the Parmesan crusted grouper or Timballo (AKA the “Cadillac of Lasagna” made with fresh ricotta cheese). Soak it all down with a tirimasu martini.
Ruth’s Chris – The steaks! The cocktails! The bread pudding! Seriously, you cannot go wrong.
See a show or performance
For the true Romantics with a capital “R,” celebrate Valentine’s Day in the most classically romantic way and catch Casablanca: Film and Live Orchestra at Hilbert Circle Theatre Feb. 13 – 15. The Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra will perform the film’s score while the film plays on a big screen above the stage. In the mood to spice things up a bit? Groove to live music at Old National Centre and catch Bootsy Collins & More: Love, Funk & Flow Valentine Festival on Feb. 13 at 8 p.m.
Experience the fun of The Mind Tripping Show – a comedy with a psychology twist. Catch the show at The Hilton on Feb. 13 at 8:30 p.m. or Feb. 14 at 5 and 8:30 p.m. Make an entire night of it and dine at 120 West Bar & Grill or McCormick and Schmick’s, both at The Hilton, before or after the show. Check The Mind Tripping Show website for special restaurant offers.
Calling all my single ladies! For a spankin’ good time, watch Spank! The Fifty Shades Parody – also at Old National Centre – on Feb. 13 at 8 p.m. and Feb. 14 at 1 and 8 p.m. Hugh Hanson, based on the character Christian Grey in the Fifty Shades books, gets the party started early dancing across the stage.
Younger Valentines can enjoy Valentine’s Day Cabaret at Peewinkle’s Puppet Studio Feb. 13 – 15. Marionettes include magical music boxes, a dancing ostrich butterflies and more.
Visit one of Downtown’s museums
Watch a pre-Valentine’s Day screening of the iconic love story An Affair to Remember at the Indianapolis Museum of Art. The film, part of the Winter Nights Film Series, plays on Feb. 13 at 8 p.m. in the Toby. And while you are there, explore Oldfields-Lilly House and Gardens, the 26-acre estate that is just as beautiful in the winter, and snap a photo in front of the LOVE sculpture. Browse Georgia O’Keefe and the Southwestern Still Life before it closes Feb. 15.
The Indiana State Museum is hosting the 12th annual Indiana Art Fair showcasing art made in Indiana. Visit the museum on Feb. 14 from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. and browse contemporary and traditional art, wearable and functional art and pieces for your home including ceramics, watercolor paintings, mosaics and more. Meet the artists while enjoying drinks and hors d’oeuvres at the Indiana Art Fair Preview Night on Feb. 13 from 5:30 – 8 p.m.
Stop by Silver in the City on Mass Ave for a unique piece of jewelry, including many options from local designers. If you are going for the bling factor (get it!), head to Windsor Jewelry for diamonds, gold and precious stones.
Give your significant other the best chocolate in town. Score big points with a signature Valentine’s Day heart box filled with sea salt caramels or your choice of assorted truffles from The Best Chocolate in Town. Planning to stay in and celebrate? Pick up your gourmet dinner drink essentials at Easley Winery and a bouquet from JP Parker Flowers (prices range from $30 – $200).
Combine the three – handmade chocolates, local wine and fresh flowers – and you have the making of a perfect night in. Cheers to that!