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Date night ideas for every type of Hoosier

Got a hot new fling? Hoping to spice things up with your longtime partner? We’re here to help plan your next date in the Circle City.

INDYtoday: INDY_Fountain Square Theater_JUN24

If all else fails, you + your date could dance next to the fountain in Fountain Square. | Photo via @kristiswangophoto

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Kids, this is the story of how I met your mother, and it was all thanks to INDYtoday.

Ok, so maybe that’s not exactly how the 2000s sitcom went, but if Ted Mosby had consulted us for date night ideas, we could’ve shaved the show down to two seasons (and saved his kids a lot of time). Regardless, whether you’ve met “the one” or are hoping to impress someone new, we’ve got 19+ local date night ideas that are legen — wait for it — dary.

For the ones who want a night out on the town

  • Take a paint and sip class | Let the professionals at Phiri Art guide you through your own painting while you sip on wine tastings.
  • Go dancing | Ever wanted to try your hand at ballroom, swing, or Latin dancing? Try taking lessons from the crew at Le Danse Ballroom Club.
  • Have a laugh | Go to a comedy show or get in front of the mic. This is sure to be a date you’ll both laugh about later.

If the way to their heart is through their stomach

  • The Quarter | This Broad Ripple spot is perfect for a date night with its outdoor patio, live music nights throughout the week, and Singo on Tuesdays (music Bingo).
  • Vida | Looking to wine and dine? Try this Four Diamond award-winning restaurant that offers a four or six-course tasting menu.
  • Try a cooking class | Making a meal together makes it even more special. You can take a date night cooking class at Sur La Table at Clay Terrace.
A group of people canoeing on the White River in Indianapolis

58 miles of the White River are undergoing one of the country’s largest river redevelopment plans to make it cleaner and more recreationally friendly.

Photo by @gkinast via Visit Indy

If you love the great outdoors

  • Go on a bike ride | Whether you decide to take a spin around Mass Ave or Fountain Square on the Cultural Trail, Broad Ripple or the north side on the Monon, or the west side on the B&O Trail — all the trails have perfect areas to stop for a drink or a bite with your date.
  • Get on the water | Looking for an adventure? Go to Frank’s Livery for a water excursion with kayaks, canoes, and paddle boards included. Plus, you don’t have to worry about getting a ride either — Frank’s offers shuttle service.
  • Go on a picnic | There are plenty of parks around Indy that are perfect for a picnic. City Editor Nicole’s personal favorite is Highland Park with a view of the skyline.
  • Take a hike | Grab your hiking boots and get some fresh air while you get to know your date a little more.

For the ones who like to play games (just not with your heart)

  • Tappers Arcade Bar | Show off your classic gaming skills at this free-play arcade and pinball destination with 60+ games to choose from.
  • Pins | This is a perfect first-date spot with duckpin bowling + other games. Plus, you’re right next door to The Garage Food Hall where you can get a bite after working up an appetite.
  • 16-Bit | Looking for a fun atmosphere to break the ice? Grab a drink and play a game at this downtown bar and arcade.
A row of Pinball machines

So many pinball machines, so little time.

Photo by INDYtoday team

If you’re really hoping that it works out

  • Try pilates | Challenge yourselves to a fun 45-minute, pilates session at Era Pilates.
  • Go climbing | Try something new + get out of your comfort zone at North Mass Boulder. You can take a climbing instruction class and then hang out at Top Out Cafe.
  • Play pickleball | Try your hand at this trending sport + get a good workout while you’re at it. Take on your date at Indianapolis Racquet Club or make it a double date and play against another couple.
INDY_couples pilates_Era Pilates_Jan2023

Trying something new is a great to connect with your special someone.

If you want an “old fashioned”-style date

  • Visit a speakeasy | We’ll let you in on a little secret. There are several speakeasies around Indy to take your date to. You may even impress them with insider knowledge.
  • See a movie at the drive-in | Go old school by visiting the drive-in. It makes the classic movie date more intimate. City Editor Nicole is a fan of Tibbs Drive-In.
  • Have a diner date | Go back in time by grabbing dinner at a retro diner around Indy.
 A couple looks at each other while sitting in front of a movie screen at a drive-in

Tibbs Drive-In was a filming location for “Walter,” which was produced by three IU Bloomington grads.

Photo by @violetshort

If you’re on a budget

  • Take a hike | Lace up + enjoy some fresh air with an active day in Eagle Creek Park. There’s plenty to explore with 16+ miles of trails — just don’t forget to bring along snacks and a Circle City kombucha for a picnic break by the water. Admission is just $6 for Marion County residents or $7 for out-of-county residents.
  • Get into the swing of things | For just $14, you and your boo can get some swing dancing lessons from Naptown Stomp at the Fountain Square Theatre Building. Beginner lessons take place every second and fourth Friday from 7:30-8:30 p.m, followed by several hours of live music.
  • Play the game of love | Hit up First Fridays at The Murphy Art Center in Fountain Square from 7-11 p.m. and play some classic arcade games at PinVault for $5 per person. Or if you’re feeling sporty, you can play a combo football-bowling game at Fowling Warehouse. It’s just $12 per person for unlimited open play, and you can bring your own food for fuel.
INDY_Fowling football bowling_SEPT2

Fowling started as a one-lane mashup of football and bowling while tailgating at the Indy 500 in 2001.

Photo by @wanderingwestfield

If you wanna show off by knowing all the hottest events in town

  • Shameless plug: Sign up for our daily newsletter, where we call out our top picks of things to do around town. Your date doesn’t have to know we’re behind it, you can take all the credit.
  • Stay up-to-date on the coolest local events around Indy with our events page.

What did we miss? If you know a perfect date spot that’s not on the list, guide us in the right direction using this survey.

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