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Three stay-at-home date ideas to keep that spark going

From cooking to board games, Echo writer Brock Doemel provides three pandemic-friendly activities for dates


“Get creative with stay-at-home dates during the pandemic with painting, cooking and board games.” Illustration published on Thursday, Oct. 22, 2020.

Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, many young people in relationships have struggled to find ideas for quality dates they can enjoy without leaving the house.

You and your partner can keep the spark alive without going out by trying these three adorable, pandemic-friendly date ideas.


"Why buy an airplane ticket when you can paint the view yourself?"

Pick up some inexpensive canvases, brushes and acrylic paints and get ready to channel your inner Bob Ross. You and your partner can set everything up and let your creative minds go to work, or you can even turn it into a game.

For the latter, set up a divider between yourselves and give each person a color palette and their own canvas and brushes. Next, have a roommate or someone else print out a random photo of their choosing and reveal it to you and your significant other at the same time.

Then, set a timer for 15 minutes for you and your date to recreate the chosen photo according to your own interpretations.

Sure, your finished products might not exactly be Rembrandt-like — just look at the photo above — but you and your partner will have a blast competing against one another.


"The same fine dinning of an expensive dinner date can be recreated in the kitchen."

Enjoying a meal that you and your significant other made together has to be near the top of every list of cute date ideas. It's also less expensive than eating out. By staying in for dinner, you also avoid exposing yourselves and others to the coronavirus.

My girlfriend and I made a savory pesto chicken dish complimented by salt-topped potatoes. If you're interested, you can check out the recipe here.

In a time when it's important to avoid date nights out on the town, making a restaurant-worthy dinner is something you and your partner can do together that still gives off the feeling of a date night.

For more inspiration, check out these three quarantine cooking recipes.

Board games

"No need to travel by rail when you can bring the fun of a miniature railroad into your home."

Board games, which many families and couples have turned to since the onset of the pandemic in the U.S., provide a unique, homely comfort perfect for date night.

I prefer the game Ticket to Ride because of the level of strategy it requires and the fact that it can be played with just two people. However, if you or your partner has as short of an attention span as my girlfriend does, it might be better to stick to something more fast-paced such as Jenga or Battleship.

Either way, sitting down and playing an old-fashioned board game with your significant other is sure to be a relaxing way to enjoy that quality time together without leaving home.

The next time you and your partner are struggling to find something to do, I suggest picking up the paintbrush, the fork or a board game. These ideas are guaranteed to give you the feel of a real date night from the comfort of your own living space.

Reach the reporter at or follow @brockdoemel on Twitter.

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