5 Quirky Date Night Ideas in St. Louis

Have you and your other half grown tired of the same old date night activities in St. Louis - dinner, drinks, scaling the Arch and base jumping into the Muddy Mississippi, that sort of thing? Then try some of these off-the-wall activities to rekindle the date night flame:

Sup With Old King Hal

OK, it's still dinner and drinks, but with Henry VIII and his flock of wenches dining alongside you, it's not your typical date night experience. A staple of Laclede's Landing for the past four decades, the Royal Dumpe time-warps you into 16th century England, where the king and his maidens sing and dance the night away while cracking crude jokes.

Enjoy the merrymaking and double entendres, but don't forget to bring cash; the Royal Dumpe does technically accept credit cards, but for some reason they practically give you the Anne Boleyn-Catherine Howard-Thomas Cromwell treatment (yes, they nearly behead you) if you try to use one.

Try Out the Swinging Lifestyle

At Lindy Hop St. Louis's weekly "Friday Night Stomp" at the Casa Loma Ballroom, that is. Show your significant other that you still got the moves at this weekly swing dance celebration. A no-pressure beginner's class takes place at 8 pm, and the main event with live music goes from 9 to midnight. It's one of the few venues in town where you'll find swingers ranging from millennials to AARP-ers. At just ten bucks, it's a date night steal.

Try Frantically to Escape a Locked Room

St. Louis's newest date night hotspot, Escape the Room is the perfect place to show off that big brain of yours, prove to your date what a lovely collaborator you make, and have a blast while doing it. Choose between one of four locked rooms (an apartment, underground cavern, Wild West bank, or Bond-esque ops center), and uncover a series of cryptic clues to hatch an escape plan in 60 minutes.

Each mission includes 8-12 players, so bring along another couple or three to make it a group date. Tickets go for $25-$30 a pop (the price of a small popcorn and 4 oz. bottled water at the theater, in other words).

Create a Vino-Fueled Masterpiece

The Pinot's Palette motto says it all – "Paint. Drink. Have Fun." Over the course of 2-3 hours, you and your date can each create a watercolor masterpiece in the style of Van Gogh, Monet, Seurat, or dozens of others. Instructors take you brushstroke by brushstroke through the process, so even the least artistic, most wine-soaked artists (like yours truly and his better half) walk away with a gem.

Tickets cost around $35 and classes sometimes sell out early, so don't hesitate to book your spot – if you do, you may be looking at another chain restaurant-and-corner bar date night.

Commune with the Dead with Betsy Belanger

What better way to liven up date night than by chilling with the dead?

Most Monday evenings throughout the year, local paranormal guru Betsy Belanger hosts haunted history tours at the infamous Lemp Mansion and Brewery, where four members of the Lemp family committed suicide. Even if you're a skeptic who doesn't believe that every bump in the night is a restless spirit, it's definitely an interesting tour of an ornate historical house.

Tickets go for around $25 and may include a spirit attachment from a tormented beer baron from a bygone era.

Marcus Whelchel lives, works, and writes in St. Louis, Missouri, with his wife and daughter. He was just informed that he won 17 million dollars from the prince of Nigeria, so you will never hear from him again.

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