We love the classic, timeless dates as much as the next guy… You know, dinner and a movie, Netflix and chill…. but they’re never our first choice. Throughout the course of our dating relationship, when we were engaged, and since being married, we’ve been on some pretty nonconventional dates. And some of you may think they are weird, or too much work, but they are worth it! They have become some of the most precious memories in our relationship. With summer fast approaching, we wanted to share some of our creative summer date ideas with you guys! We have curated what we think are 50 of the best summer date ideas, and guess what…. they are ALL UNDER $50!!!
Because let’s be honest, $50 is pushing it sometimes as a newlywed, and especially if you’re still in college, in a dating relationship, or engaged!
- Datebox – We love Datebox so much because not only does it give us more date ideas, it ships them right to our doorstep! The convenience is glorious, and so is what’s in the box. Below is a video from our most recent Datebox (March box), we also got ingredients for cake pops and a few other goodies! Sign up for a monthly Datebox, and use code: ROLOFF50 for 50% off your first month, or code: ROLOFF6 for one month free off a 6-month subscription to Datebox!
Find our more and about Datebox, check out this video!!
- McMenamins Theater – Want to watch a movie in theaters, on a comfortable vintage couch, with a beer in hand, and dinner served to you?! Movie tickets are $4 dollars per person!!! Sadly, you have to live in Oregon or Washington to experience this epicness, but I’m sure they have something similar in other states! McMenamins is a chain of 65 brewpubs, breweries, music venues, lodges, historic hotels, and theaters known for their majestic atmosphere. When Jer and I were dating, we used to sneak into the soaking pool at the McMenamins near Roloff Farms. Their soaking pools make you feel like you are in an outdoor bath in Europe centuries ago. If you ever come to Oregon or Washington for a date, make SURE you go to McMenamins!
- Visit your closest museum – Chances are, there is some kind of museum or historic monument in the city you live in, and many of them are free!! When we lived in LA we used to go to The Getty and Griffith Observatory all the time just to walk around while we drank our coffee. Sometimes we even brought a picnic with us!
- Go on a picnic – Come on everyone loves the idea of a good old fashion picnic, but do you every really go on one?! Or do you just talk about it… Hunt down the perfect picnic basket first, then make yourself a picnic dinner, grab your favorite bottle of wine, a few candles, a comfortable blanket or two, and bring a deck of cards to play games as the sun goes down. Worth the effort every time.
- Build a fort in your bedroom or yard – Pop popcorn and make favorite cocktails, then climb into your fort in your pajamas, and watch an old movie. Note: the key to epic fort building is dozens of pillows and a lantern to light the inside. Make sure you snap a photo. Then go hunting for old photos of when you were kids to compare your fort building skills against. Have kids? Show your kiddos your fort the next day and make them jealous!
- Urban Hike – What’s that you ask? Basically, it’s a hike from your city to another city! This might even be a full day adventure. Time lapse it with a camera or strap a go pro to your head and make a movie of your longgggg adventure walking the streets and back roads. Pack lots of snacks, and leave your phones at home!!!
- Cook a meal together – Cook something that both of you have never made before, so that way you can learn together! Maybe it’s dinner, or maybe it’s dessert, whatever it is, take photos of the process and put them in a “Family Recipes” book!
- Play a game of chess – Or if you don’t know how, learn to play. Chess is one of our favorite games to play, and we play often! I even had a custom chess board (that doubles as a coffee table) made for Jeremy for Christmas. We often play casually throughout the night, while watching a light-hearted movie or show. The more you play, the more you will grow to love it. If chess is not your thing… another fun thing to do is go to Target, each of you buy your favorite childhood game, or just a favorite game of yours (keep it a surprise so buy them separately), and then come home bake some cookies, and play each others games! Here are some of our favorite games![show_shopthepost_widget id=”1527239″]
- Go camping and reread your vows – Or if you don’t have a local camping spot, camp in your backyard! Bring your wedding vows with you and read them to each other by lantern light in the tent! You know what to do after that…
- Have a campfire or bonfire – In your yard, at the coast, or by the lake near where you live! Roast some mallows, crack some beers, and bring a book that you both love! Take turns reading to each other out load. We would encourage you both to commit to one book that you both read every year! For us, that book is, “A Severe Mercy,” by Sheldon Vanauken. HIGHLY RECOMMEND IT!!!
- Drive-in movie theater – Pack your car (truck recommended) with snacks and drinks, pillows, blankets, and sleeping bags, and go to your local drive-in movie theater!
- Go rollerblading – Rollerblade around your neighborhood, and then to your favorite ice cream shop! Take breaks along the way to pick blackberries. When you are burnt out and tired come home and watch a movie from this list of, “100 movies you must see before you die.”
- Road-trip to explore a new city – Take a road trip for the day to a city close to where you live, that both of you have never been to! Google the main attraction in that city before you go, and hit it up if it’s under 50 dollars. Try to get a random couple to go to coffee, lunch or drinks with you while you are there!
- Teach each other a skill – Or teach each other something one of you knows how to do, that your spouse doesn’t. Examples; change a flat tire, play a certain card game, guitar lessons, how to drive stick-shift, how to cook/bake something, or how to rock climb;) The key is to let the other person teach you something.
- Create a scavenger hunt for each other – Take a drive down memory lane by asking your date to answer questions on slips of paper at each location. Make them recall the significance of each location that you take them to, and make them do something photo worthy at each location. Next week (or next date night) switch roles! Make a little photo book of all your favorite/significant spots and why they are special to you.
- Make homemade ice cream – I recommend making peach, or some type of berry, and use fresh berries or fruit you picked from a U-pick earlier that day!
- Rent a tandem bike – Ride tandem to the nearest body of water to take a dip. Air dry in your swimsuits on the bike riding home. Get slurpees.
- Epic beach day – Fly a kite, make a bonfire, go for a long walk, swim in the ocean, find some sand dunes, take photos, and roast some smores. Then listen to a podcast on the drive home.
- Rent a canoe and go fishing – Or, paddle across the lake or river to your own private beach spot! Pack a picnic, get your tan on, go swimming, and make a fire. Then paddle back at sunset.
- Hunt down the best rope swing in your area and conquer it – Google search, ask your friends, or sift through Instagram hashtags to find the coolest rope swing near you! Take turns pushing each other and flailing into the water.
- Find a hot-spring near you – Hike into a hot-spring near you! There’s nothing like soaking in an organic hot tub in the middle of nowhere!
- Wake up at sunrise and go for a hike – Pack breakfast with you and cook it on a camp stove at the top! Give each other notes to read that you wrote the night before.
- Pick berries – Then make homemade jam, pie, or berry cobbler together. Eat it together while writing out your goals for the coming year. If you have never done the exercise of writing out your season, short-term, and long-term goals, give it a try! Super powerful exercise.
- Drive to a viewpoint to make a summer bucket list – To watch the stars or city lights and make a summer bucket list. Bring a lantern with you to light the list while you write in the dark.
- Walk or bike to a farmer’s market – Pick up some fresh fruit and veggies or grab lunch and listen to the live music.
- Set up a slackline in your yard or park near you – Take turns competing for distance against each other. Bring a Frisbee and some baseball mitts to play catch when you get tired (you can usually find cheap baseball mitts at goodwill or on Amazon!
- Go to county fair – By corn on the cob, ride the Ferris wheel, listen to country music, look at the animals, and get a giant elephant ear!
- Find somewhere that has rooftop happy hour – Get a few drinks, and then go to your favorite cheap dinner spot.
- Draw chalk on your sidewalk or driveway – Chalk a mural of your love story and favorite memories.
- Attend a local baseball game, track meet, or soccer game – Maybe it’s even a high school game, minor league, whatever is under $50 for two tickets;)
- Float the river in the evening, and then go skinny dipping if you dare – See how long you can last naked in the water before you get scared and grab your suits!
- Run in a local 5k race – Enter a race that is under $50 for each of you to enter. Then treat yourself to burgers and milkshakes after!
- Go to a botanical garden or flower field – It could be a nursery, lavender field, tulip farm or botanical garden. Buy a few succulents or flowers, and take some photos of you two kissing in the beautiful vegetation. It will no doubt be a beautiful shot!
- Rent a moped or scooter and then drive to a winery – Cruise around through the vineyards on your mopeds, and stop in at a few wineries for some tastings.
- Search your city’s hashtag on Instagram – Find something awesome to do and go do it! Then add your photo to the hashtag;)
- Go to the library or local bookstore and write notes in your favorite books – Write a bunch of notes and place them inside your favorite books for future customers to find when they buy the books!
- Take a swing or salsa dance class – Dress the part, and learn a dance! Then go to a billiards or arcade spot after and play a few rounds pool!
- Go to as many of your friends houses as you can in one night – Bring each of them ice cream or some other type of treat (up to 50 dollars worth) and deliver thank you/appreciation notes to each of them!
- Get on top of your roof and eat pizza – Make sure you also have some RC or vintage glass bottle cokes with straws. Bring a speaker and play your favorite music. Come up with a marriage mantra. Something that you both want to live by. Your mission statement. For us, it’s Beating50Percent.
- Make an outdoor bath tub – By an old feeding tub or pool, and make an outdoor, candlelit, hot tub with good smelling bath salts! Give each other massages after.
- Do a progressive dinner – Have appetizers at one spot, entrees at another, and drinks or dessert at the last! Share what you get at each place, so you can keep it under $50! Depending on the city you live in this may be hard to do, so if you can’t keep it under $50, coordinate with three other couples and go from house to house instead of restaurant to restaurant! Then you will only be responsible for the meal at your house! To add another element, predetermine the topics for conversation at each location.
- Estate/Garage sale hunt – Search craigslist for estate sales, and garage sales happening in your area. Hit up as many as you can in one morning. Then go out to your favorite breakfast spot!
- Go geocaching – There are millions of geocaches around the world. There are probably some near you right now! It’s basically a game of hide-and-seek using your GPS and other hints to find certain geocaches! It’s more fun that it sounds, I promise. Try it! You can even create your own geocache!
- Tour open houses – Or walk through houses being built in your area and have fun pretending to design different homes. Then go home and do one home improvement to your own home together.
- Build a giant slip and slide – At the park, beach or in your backyard! Go to your local hardware store and find a 100-foot (or however you want the slide to be) strip of plastic. Make sure to use lots of canola oil when sliding! Invite your friends, and make a video of everyone’s slide combined. See ours >>here<<
- Rent a brew cycle – You will have a blast cruising around on this 12-person bike trolley with a bunch of your friends while sipping beers and people watching.
- Take a personality test – I recommend the 16 Personalities Test because it’s free and very descriptive. Then go to coffee to discuss what you learned about yourself, and one another. Come up with one practical way each of you can love the other person better.
- Hunt down a trampoline for sale on craigslist – Sometimes you can find them at garage sales ect. Set it up in your backyard. Then jump and sleep under the starts!
- Read this book and write your love story –“Book of us: A Journal of Your Love Story”
- Turn off your phones for an ENTIRE DAY – Go for a drive and get lost. Have fun explore a new place undistracted, and rely on people to help navigate you to food, coffee, gas, and how to get home.
Disclaimer: Most of these dates are targeted at married couples, and some of them we would NOT encourage you to do if you are in a dating relationship!
If you enjoyed reading our ideas and feel others would too, we encourage you to share our post on Pinterest for others to benefit from! Here are some more pinnable photos! Follow us on Pinterest for more >>HERE<<
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