Date night on the Grand Strand

February is here, ushering in Valentine’s Day and a month-long celebration of love.

While many couples take the traditional route, why not try a different kind of date night this year - especially in this less-than-normal time? Here are some ideas for a less predictable date on Valentine’s Day or any day of the year.

Golf

While not necessarily an evening activity, a day on the green could be a surprisingly romantic way to spend time with your significant other.

Spending time outdoors and getting some exercise is a good enough reason to head to a local course, but keeping score and giving each other pointers makes golf even more enjoyable. With more than 100 golf courses across the Grand Strand, there are plenty of locations to choose from.

State parks

Take a walk on the wild side, literally, with a trip to one of the Grand Strand’s state parks.

Huntington Beach State Park in Murrells Inlet has plenty of open space to walk, run, bike and hike as well as plenty of opportunities for bird-watching. Myrtle Beach State Park is a prime spot for surf and pier fishing, camping along the beach or a picnic.

For more information on either park, visit southcarolinaparks.com.

Bowling

What could be more fun than a bit of friendly competition? Let the good times roll at one of several Grand Strand bowling alleys.

Whether you still need bumpers, are league-level awesome or are more into the glow-in-the-dark fun of black light bowling, you and your honey can strike up some fun.

Area bowling alleys include Waccamaw Bowling Center (101 Philip Gray Dr. in Myrtle Beach), Surfside Bowl Entertainment Center (510 U.S. 17 N. in Surfside Beach), 810 North Myrtle Beach (1105 U.S. 17 S. in North Myrtle Beach) 810 Market Common (1220 Moser Dr. in Myrtle Beach), 810 Conway (2001 U.S. 501 E. in Conway) and Little River Lanes (300 Bowling Ln. in Little River).

Comedy Cabana

If you’re a couple who likes to laugh, you two can get your giggle on at Comedy Cabana.

Fans of stand-up will love a date at Comedy Cabana, a hot spot on the Grand Strand for more than 25 years. Comedian Drew Frazier will entertain audiences the week of Valentine’s Day, with shows Feb. 10-14. On the 14th, the venue will offer a “Love and Laughter” package, which includes limited reserved seating, chocolates and a long-stemmed rose for the ladies. Comedy Cabana is at 9588 N. Kings Hwy. in Myrtle Beach. For more information, visit comedycabana.com.

Art museum/gallery

Your creative Valentine will love getting inspired by the works of local, regional and national talent.

Take your love to see the latest exhibits at the Franklin G. Burroughs-Simeon B. Chapin Art Museum, located near the ocean at 3100 S. Ocean Boulevard in Myrtle Beach. Admission to the museum is always free, but donations are greatly appreciated.

February exhibits include pieces from the 10th annual Collectors’ Event and pieces from the American Society of Marine Artists’ 18th national exhibition. Visit myrtlebeachartmuseum.org for more information.

Other galleries in the area include Seacoast Artists Gallery at The Market Common (3032 Nevers St. in Myrtle Beach), William H. Miller Studios & Fine Art (714 Main St. in Myrtle Beach), Master’s Editions at Broadway at the Beach, and various galleries at Brookgreen Gardens (see article on page 12 for upcoming exhibits at Brookgreen).

Spa day

Give your queen or king the royal treatment with a relaxing spa day this Valentine’s Day. The Grand Strand is home to many spots for relaxation, whether you’re looking for a massage or a manicure. Atlantis Nails & Spa at 201 75th Ave. N. is a great place to get your hands and feet cared for.

Asher Theatre

Take in a show with your songbird! The Asher Theatre, located at 3237 Waccamaw Blvd. in Myrtle Beach, has a wide assortment of entertainment options to choose from this month. Recurring events include “Motown ‘59: The Show,” “Legends of Soul” featuring local diva Kay Love, and “Man of A Thousand Voices” featuring the comedy and impressions of James Stephens III. New shows this month include an Al Green tribute show and a Lionel Richie tribute show. See ad on this page for more details. Call 843-903-3100 or visit www.ashertheatre.com to book your seats.

Broadway at the Beach

Whether you are a local or a visitor, there is plenty of fun to be had at Broadway at the Beach year-round.

From strolling the many boardwalks and admiring Lake Broadway at night to hitting one of several restaurants or attractions, you and your sweetheart have multiple options for a fun night out.

For more information on what Broadway at the Beach has to offer, visit broadwayatthebeach.com.

Ripley’s Aquarium

The ocean has always had an air of romance to it, but it’s a bit cold for an actual walk on the beach these days. Head to Ripley’s Aquarium at Broadway at the Beach for the next best thing!

Health and safety measures are in place at the venue to ensure an enjoyable visit for all. The aquarium is open from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily. The aquarium welcomed a new penguin exhibit in 2020 and offers glass bottom boat rides, live diving shows and stingray experiences for guests of all ages to enjoy.

For couples looking to celebrate in a fishy, fun way, plan to attend Ripley’s Splash of Love, hosted Feb. 14 from 5-8 p.m. Get ready for a night of romance as you enjoy a fabulous 4-course dinner in a unique aquatic setting. Couples can choose seating inside the Shark Tunnel or the Penguin Playhouse for a special VIP experience.

For more information, visit www.ripleyaquariums.com/myrtlebeach/ or call 843-916-0888 (extension 3238).

Arcade

Do you love playing Pac-Man, Skee Ball and Whack-A-Mole? Take your date to one of the area’s many arcades and show off your skills.

Fun Plaza and the Boardwalk Arcade at Gay Dolphin Gift Cove, located on the Myrtle Beach Boardwalk within walking distance of the beach are among the beach’s most visited gaming spots. You can find games as several other locations along the Strand, including the area’s shopping complexes and many piers along the shore.

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