11 Ways to Step Up Your Valentine’s Day

This weekend, you can watch curated cartoons, see who wins a piano duel or glam up with your friends.
Valentine’s Day candy

Go beyond a candlelit dinner this Valentine’s Day with an array of heart-themed events in Arlington. (Photo by Element5 Digital on Unsplash)

Sure, sharing a several-course meal at the latest buzzy spot in the neighborhood is a desirable Valentine’s Day outcome for many (and here are the best spots for you to do just that). But if you’re looking for something a little more out-of-the-box, or something to tack on to the restaurant experience, Arlington has it. Check out these options.

Share an Afternoon of Spoons, Toons and Booze

Prep for the big day at the Arlington Cinema and Drafthouse by chilling with some cartoons, the kind of sugary cereal you were never allowed to eat as a kid, and cocktails tailored to an afternoon in your jammies. (See: The Sonny, a white Russian laced with Cocoa Puffs.) // Read facility policies regarding Covid here. Feb. 12-13. Shows start at noon. 2903 Columbia Pike, Arlington (Columbia Pike). $15.

Paint a Love Tree

A tree engulfed in a sea of hearts is just one of the Valentine’s-themed options for a painting class at Muse Paintbar. Fuel your creativity with options from an ample menu of small bites and alcoholic beverages. // Masks required when not eating or drinking. Feb. 12-14. Times and prices vary. 4238 Wilson Blvd., Arlington (Ballston)

Dinner Photoshoot On Odyssey Boston 2019

Snuggle up to your significant other as you sail along the Potomac. (Photo courtesy of City Cruises)

Take a Valentine’s Day Dinner Cruise

Why eat in a stationary restaurant when you can dine on the water? On this Odyssey cruise along the Potomac, share a three-course meal, order custom cocktails and take a turn on the dance floor (there will be a DJ). // Feb. 12-Feb. 14. Times vary. Cruise departs from Pier 4, 580 Water St. SW, Washington, D.C. $160.90+ per person.

Glam up for Galentine’s Day 

Getting a mani/pedi with a group of friends is probably enough of a draw, but Paint Nail Bar is adding a few other elements to pamper you on Valentine’s Eve, such as specialty cocktails, snacks, a photo booth and a take-home treat. // Reservations recommended. Feb. 13. 1520 Clarendon Blvd., Arlington (Rosslyn)

valentine's day Lily's Flower Truck

Don’t have a home garden? Borrow clippings from Lily’s Flower Truck for a handmade Valentine’s Day bouquet for your sweetie pie. (Photo courtesy of National Landing BID)

Build a Valentine’s Day Bouquet

Brighten someone’s day with a handmade bouquet at this event co-sponsored by Lily’s Flower Truck and Commonwealth Joe Coffee Roasters. The first 20 folks to arrive with a receipt from the coffee shop will get free flowers. A portion of the proceeds will benefit local animal shelters. // Feb. 13, 11 a.m.-1 p.m. 520 12th St. S., Suite 150, Arlington (Pentagon City). Free.

Craft a Work of Art Alongside Your Craft Beer

Try not to drop your paintbrush in your freshly poured pint while you create an artful masterpiece at this two-hour sip-and-paint at New District Brewing Company. // Feb. 13, 1-3 p.m. 2709 S. Oakland St., Arlington (Shirlington). $30.

Bear Witness to a Piano Duel

The inaugural Dueling Piano Valentine’s Day Extravaganza at Caboose Commons blends rock music with comedy, and promises to be interactive. // Feb. 14, 6-9 p.m. Tables are first-come, first-served. 2918 Eskridge Road, Fairfax. Free.

Get Your Head in the Games

Whether you want to settle an old score with your current flame or revel in a group hang, there is plenty of themed entertainment at Punchbowl Social: The karaoke catalogue is stocked with love songs, an I Love You wall is ready for your selfie and the shareable Shot Through the Heart Punch may encourage you to forgo that boring glass of bubbly. // Feb. 14. 4238 Wilson Blvd., Suite 1180, Arlington (Ballston)

valentine's day gift

Gift local with sweets and wares from Arlington makers, including jewelry from Soultry. (Photo courtesy of Made in Arlington)

Support Local Makers and Bakers on Valentine’s Day

Snag some locally made goodies for your sweetie (or your friends!) at this pop-up on George Mason University’s campus. Vendors include Kingsbury Chocolates, Village Sweet Bakery, Soultry and Fast Snail. // Feb. 14, 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Van Metre Hall, 3351 Fairfax Drive, Arlington (Clarendon)

Go Get a Gram

No, not that ’Gram. The kind that you once received in elementary school, maybe with a doily border. If you fear (as I do) that you won’t receive a damn thing on Valentine’s Day, cast that fear aside as you snag a free Valentine in Rosslyn, accompanied by heart-shaped mints and carnations. // Feb. 14, 11:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. at Rosslyn Parklet, Oak Street and Wilson Blvd. 4:30-5:30 p.m. at Central Place Plaza, 1800 N. Lynn St., Arlington (Rosslyn). Free.

Pick Up Valentine’s Day Flowers for That Special Someone

There’s a reason flowers will never run out of style as a Valentine’s Day gift—they’re gorgeous. Scoop up a thoughtfully prepared bouquet from this newish lunch spot and gift it to someone you love. // Poppyseed Rye, 818 N. Quincy St., Suite 102, Arlington. $55+.

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Categories: Arts & Entertainment