As the weather gets colder, it's easy to close the door to the elements and set your social calendar on "hibernate." But just because it's a bit chilly, doesn't mean it can't be a bit steamy. Reddit's Kalamazoo board was abuzz with winter date ideas, so I thought I would share some, and add one of my own. Here are five great date ideas for Kalamazoo in Winter.

  1. Art Hop - the first Friday of every month local artists descend on the city showcasing their wares and hocking merch. Sure this is a year-round event, but there's something kind of magical about Art Hop in the winter. Suddenly everything you see is that stocking stuffer you've been looking for, or that perfect gift for the hard-to-shop-for person in your life. Plus, someone is always serving up some hot cocoa to help you through your art hunting adventure.
  2. Walking the City - now bare with me. I know that taking a walk sounds kind of lame (and kind of cold, considering the weather), but the lights at Bronson Park, the snow in the trees, and the decorations on the mall fill the evening with whimsy. Whimsy, I say! There are also some great coffee shops and tea houses along the mall to grab a cup of something to warm your soul and your hands.
  3. Ice Skating - Create your own Currier and Ives tablo at Lawson Ice Arena or Wings Event Center. Don't have skates? No problem! They have skate rental at both locations. And, as the weather gets colder, outdoor rinks can be found all over West Michigan.
  4. Take a Dip in the Hot Tub - This is the "steamy" bit I was talking about. Nothing breaks the monotony of grey days and bone chilling cold than a trip to the English Country... or Isle Royale... or Rainforest. I'm talking about the many different hot tub rooms as Oasis, a place dedicated to melting stress and thawing bodies. This place isn't just for couples, though. Call in advance and let them know you're bringing children and they will change the temp in the tub to feel like bath water, so the kids can splash and play and get rid of some of their winter blues.
  5. Game Night - Sometimes winter makes the roads downright impassable in Kalamazoo. Plan ahead with a trip to Fanfare and create a collection of cabin fever busting games. I'm not talking about Monopoly or Clue (although both are fine games, if you like never speaking to your family again), I'm talking about Munchkin, Magic, or Unreal Estate (created by a Kalamazoo resident and made in Grand Rapids... highly recommend this one). When all else fails, invite the neighbors over for euchre.

Final summation: don't let the weather hold you back from enjoying the merry sights and sounds downtown this winter. And if neither of you can muster the energy to put pants on, there's always Netflix.

Bonus Video: People from Illinois Explain Michigan Accents