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Maybe you’ve been swiping right waiting for stay-at-home orders to lift so you can take your quarantine crush on a non-Zoom-assisted date—or perhaps you and your SO haven’t had a night away from the kids since Valentine’s Day. Either way, it’s safe to say the new coronavirus hasn’t helped your love life. With restrictions beginning to relax, we’ve planned five pandemic-friendly, passion-igniting alternatives to traditional dates, whether you’re fanning a new flame or rekindling an existing relationship.
The Standard: Swapping flirty glances over steaming-hot lattes
The Substitute: Take a morning stroll after filling to-go mugs with made-at-home joe from Native Coffee Club’s subscription service. Each delivery (starting at $20/month) includes beans from a Colorado-based roaster such as Jubilee Roasting Co. or Little Owl Coffee and a free drink card for their cafes—i.e., the perfect way to secure a second date.
Give One Year of 5280 for just $16.
The Standard: Catching a summer blockbuster at a packed movie theater
The Substitute: Pack up your own candy and popcorn, get in the car, and claim your parking spot at the Drive-in Movie Club pop-up from July 21 to 26. In a TBD location (visit zip-tickets.com for updates), you and your date will get to view cult classics and newer releases without fretting about the dude in the row behind you ruining the movie with his constant texting (or worse, coughing).
The Standard: Holding hands while viewing the Denver Art Museum’s new exhibit
The Substitute: Take a virtual tour of the Clyfford Still Museum via its online collection. Narrow your selection—filter by what’s currently on view, color, or where or when the works were created—then activate the “slow looking” feature, which simulates the in-person viewing experience by zooming in and panning across the canvas.
The Standard: Sipping beers and rooting for the home team at Coors Field
The Substitute: Host your own local-microbrew-fueled contest with Colorado Ski Chairs’ custom-made cornhole sets (starting at $300). The Centennial-based company will hand-make two boards using repurposed downhill or cross-country skis or snowboards in the color of your choice. Bonus: Adapting it to be a two-person game means no one has to share bags.
The Standard: Canoodling over dinner and drinks at a low-lit, romantic restaurant
The Substitute: Dim the lights, put on some Sinatra, and work together to make professional-grade dishes with a meal kit from PreFare. The Denver operation delivers premeasured ingredients (locally sourced when possible and with minimal packaging waste) for entrées like beef ragu pasta that require 15 minutes or less of hands-on prep.