Because Love Is in the Air: 8 Best Cheap Date Ideas for This February in NYC

So you want to date in February? Well, certainly you'll want to team up with a romantic partner and find something fun to do for Valentine's Day, but guess what? Valentine's Day isn't the only weekend in February.

We know that's a radical viewpoint, but it's true. Super Bowl weekend also isn't the only weekend in February. Also, it doesn't have to be the weekend to go on a date.

Now that we've established you'll need dating ideas for evenings other than Valentine's Day, let's talk funds. You definitely do not want to be dropping millions on your dates this month.

Living in New York City is stressful enough financially without the added burden of way-too-expensive dates. You feel us?

So, with all these ideas in mind, we've compiled the cheap dating guide for February in NYC below. You're welcome.

1. Central Park Ice Festival (Mid-Park from 66th to 72nd Streets)

istillheartnewyork #TBT to a previous Ice Festival at Central Park. The mostly free event takes place again on Valentine's Day this Saturday. There will be live ice carving from 3 to 5PM and for the first time, a Silent Disco is scheduled from 5 to 7PM #icefestival #okamotostudio #centralpark #centralparkicefestival #centralparkicefest #icecarving #ice #cold #nyc #newyorkcity

The Central Park Ice Festival on February 13th is entirely free, and it's a great way to celebrate Valentine's weekend with your crush, partner, or betrothed.

It's all happening at the Naumburg Bandshell from 66th to 72nd Streets in Central Park from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. 


There will be ice sculptors from Okamoto Studio making incredible creations out of ice. They'll use electric chain saws, chisels, and picks to transform more than 6,000 pounds of ice into crazy, beautiful creations.

Want to jam? Great. Check out the silent disco from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m., plus the food trucks selling delicious cuisine from Dub Pies, Domo Taco, Wafles and Dinges, and Don Café. This is definitely an event you should check out. Learn more here.

2. Chaos Cooking (various locations)

chaoscooking #waybackwednesday when we were kicking it with some serious sushi style. #sushimaking #homemade #chaoscooking #rocks

Do you and your beau love to cook, and you don't feel like dropping upwards of $50 for a fancy cooking class?

Great news: Chaos Cooking classes are totally free. Well, almost totally free. Everyone participating in this cooking class needs to show up with the ingredients to make one dish, and to make enough for everyone to try a little bit of it.

Then, you show up, prepare your dish, and cook and drink in a community setting. You'll also have to bring a bottle of wine.

There's a Chaos Cooking Social in Astoria on February 13th from 6:30 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. Check out more Chaos Cooking events here.

3. Saturdays at The Guggenheim

elliebrecci How cool is #theguggenheim though

Most people have been to the Met, the MoMa and even the Museum of Natural History. If you haven't been to these places, you should get on it. They're just as incredible as everyone says they are.

If neither of you have been to The Guggenheim, it's an excellent February date idea, if you ask us. It's got a ton of famous paintings in its permanent collection, like Mountains at Saint-Rémy by Vincent van Gogh and the Yellow Cow by Franz Marc.


Their current exhibits are pretty amazing, too. They've got a Photo-Poetics anthology on view until March 27th, and a How to Work Better exhibit until April 27th.

Plus, it's pay-what-you-wish on Saturdays after 5:45 p.m., so you don't have to spend any more than you want to on your culture-filled date.

4. Frigid New York Theater Festival (various locations)

frigidnewyork We're all set! #debate

Love plays? Excellent. The Frigid New York theater festival offers you and your date the most excellent chance to immerse yourself in all the theater NYC has to offer for completely affordable prices.

Frigid New York was founded in 2007, and has ever since continued its goal of supporting theater of the fringe of mainstream. As a result, the artists take home 100% of their box office earnings.

This year's festival will feature 30 affordable shows at two East Village theaters, and they're definitely bound to teach you something intellectually and emotionally. Plus, you and your date will wind up having a fun night out.

Browse the schedule of performances here, and enjoy the collision of amazing theater and affordable prices.


5. The Bronx Zoo (2300 Southern Blvd - the Bronx)

ms._jillian Majestic Lions live in The Bronx. They are in captivity at The Bronx Zoo. #beautyandthebeast #bronxrenaissance #lions #majesticbeasts #animalkingdom #thebronxzoo #bronxzoo #goldenmanes #grazing #captiveanimals

Admission to the Bronx Zoo is pay-what-you wish on Wednesdays. Which is excellent news, because it means you can slip them a $10 for admission instead of the $20 they charge every other day of the week.

Heading to the zoo on a date is a great move. It gives you the opportunity to get mutually excited over the cuteness of all the animals, and fantasize how your relationship would change if the two of you adopted a lion.


The Bronx Zoo specifically is a good idea because it's got a wild Asia monorail, a butterfly garden, a congo gorilla forest, and a bug carousel.

Also, they have more than 6,000 animals from 650 different species, so yeah, it's a pretty special place to visit. Even in the middle of a NYC winter. 

6. Emo Night Brooklyn (149 7th Street - Brooklyn)

haleyannaful Amazing evening tonight at the #brooklynbluegrassbash at #thebellhousebrooklyn!! So many amazing artists and a great community under one roof #nyc #musicfestival #bluegrass #folkmusic #mandolin

What did you listen to in middle school? Was it Brand New, Taking Back Sunday, The Used, Dashboard Confessional, Something Corporate, and Secondhand Serenade?

Yeah, we definitely feel you on that. Anyway, this party will give you the opportunity to relive that likely turbulent time in your adolescent past.

This evening will be a complete blast of cold beers, dancing, laughing, and screaming to the best of the 00s' emo and pop punk.

We're guessing this will be a pretty incredible way for you to emotionally bond with your date. Plus, it's only $8, so that's always a good thing. It starts at 10 p.m. on Friday, February 19th.

7. Rock the Yacht (Pier 15)

iamlegaci Picture courtesy of @djspicenyc #rocktheyacht #toronto #caribana2015

What could be more romantic than a three hour cruise around the New York Harbor in February on Valentine's Day weekend?

Well, we're going to have to go with nothing. Yes, this party cruise will be cold and endlessly romantic. Yes, cold, romantic cruises encourage cuddling.


This cruise will leave from Pier 15 at South Street Seaport at 9 p.m. on Friday, February 12th and will return at midnight.

There will be a DJ, a cash bar, and incredible views. Also, tickets only cost $25. Get them here.

8. Full Circle Bar (1810 East 12th Street)

joeythecatskeeball Joey, our defending National #Brewskeeball Champion has traveled to Austin to compete in the 2015 Skeeball competition. Stay tuned for updates! #skeeball #fullcirclebar #itstheBEEB

We think you should head to Full Circle Bar for one of your February dates. Where'd we get that idea? Well, there's nothing like a little liquid courage to help move a date along.

Plus, Full Circle Bar has skee-ball, and it's always a good move to invite some competition into the dating environment.

Plus, everything costs $4 from 11 p.m. to close on Sundays, so you should probably check it out during that time to give your wallet a little break from the reality of NYC prices.

They've also got free skee-ball on Sunday from 11 p.m. to 4 a.m. and Thursdays from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. They've also got delicious chili, hot dogs, and grilled cheese pretzels, so you can satisfy your appetite while having a blast.

Check out Eataly's Rooftop Ski Lodge Has Reopened for February! 

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