Summer dates are my favorite dates. Because we parents deserve date night in the summer a million billion times over. Our kids are around A LOT, it feels like all we do is apply sunscreen, wash pool towels, arrange camp pick-ups and drop-offs, apply sunscreen, wipe up melty ice cream off sticky hands, and apply sunscreen.

So, for all those hard working parents out there, here are 8 not-so-known summer date night ideas. (And even if you do know, it’s time to actually do it!) 

baltimore date ideas

A drive-in movie. The list of house rules for Bengies Drive-In Theatre, opened since 1956, is a bit intimidating, but once you get past the DO NOT stuff, you get to roll down the windows, eat a giant tub of popcorn, and make out with your partner within the comforts of your car, all while watching a movie on the biggest screen in the USA. (For other outdoor movies from AVAM to Little Italy check out Baltimore Magazine’s list

Find a pop-up. Or some other restaurant outside of your norm. We are big fans of all the cool stuff that is happening at Artifact Coffee including a Tiki Speakeasy on July 24th (including classic tiki cocktails & charcoal-roasted suckling pig) and a Distillery Lane multi-course dinner (featuring Spike in the kitchen, and paired with ciders made from apples grown and fermented in Jefferson by Distillery Lane Ciderworks.) We also love the itty bitty Bottega on Maryland Avenue. It has 15 seats, the menu changes constantly, and it’s BYOB. Make a reservation. Ditch the kids with the grandparents on a Sunday and head to Hersh’s for their new brunch and choose between a sweet custard strata and a porchetta Panini. (Or just get both!)

Go to the pool. Crazy I know. It feels like I live at the pool. But the idea of going to the pool and swimming, reading, sun bathing, and eating ice cream sandwiches sans kids? Sounds heavenly … and maybe even romantic. 

Some like it hot. For starters who doesn’t love a day date. (In other news least favorite date night: Friday!) Head over to Corradetti Glassblowing Studio & Gallery for one of their Saturday morning summer fusing classes. (Note: It gets hot in there.) Design and assemble things like glass trays and sun catchers from flat shapes of glass. Afterwards they fire your piece in the kiln to … 1400 degrees (!!) to fuse it together. Also, Woodberry Kitchen is right next door for a cool-down cocktail.

A little magic. We kind of love Spencer Horsman and his hour and a half comedy magic shows at Illusions Magic Bar & Lounge. There’s handcuffs, cocktails, and a whole lot of gasps. 

Flower child (without the child). There are all sorts of great floral workshops during the summer months. We love the folks at Local Color Flowers. They team up with local farms to bring classes as varied as terrariums, summer centerpieces and head wreaths. There is usually a farm tour (if it’s not at their studio), drinks and snacks, and then instructions. Think flowers aren’t for guys? Google floral beards. 

Get cooking.  There are lots of local places that offer cooking classes but we’re partial to the ones at seed-to-table Waterfront Kitchen. We like them because it’s real cooking, varying from baking bread to cooking with olive oil to grilling meats, even a visit to their greenhouse.  

On the water.  Would be nice if we all had friends with boats. Otherwise, there are still plenty of ways to spend the day on the water with your love. The cheapest is probably the water taxi (especially if you have a season pass!) … spend the entire day getting around the city by boat: an O’s game, lunch, AVAM Ft. McHenry, and on and on. You can charter boats by the day or the hour and sail around the harbor (or head to Annapolis for the day.)  If all else fails, hit up the dragon boats in the harbor and relish the scenery and silence.