5 Unique, Cheap (and Green!) Summer Date Ideas

Because hitting the movies again is booooring

Ah, summertime. There’s nothing better than walking outside without layers of coats, mittens and hats, eh? Another advantage of the warm weather is that it’s SO easy to have a fun date—and it’s really cheap, too.

Here are five cheap and green date ideas you can try out this summer (or, you know, tell someone to plan for you. Whichever.):

1. Plan a mini scavenger hunt. Scour your neighborhood or explore a new one, hitting the local landmarks, bars and coffee shops. You can send the afternoon walking around and sampling something at each place.

2. Visit a farmers’ market. Check out the selection of local ingredients and create a recipe you two can cook together. The ideas are endless: Grab fruit and veggies for a healthy smoothie. Stock up on breads and cheeses for a picnic in the park. Or try going all out and make a locally sourced dinner with vegetables, meat (if you swing that way) or tofu, with herbs, rice or quinoa for a complete meal.

3. Take a class or lecture. So many of them are free! You’ll learn something new and have a lot to talk about afterwards when you grab a bite to eat. Not sure where to find good ones? Check out the calendar at the Academy of Natural Sciences.

4. Take a cooking class. Classes at the Restaurant School at Walnut College or Reading Terminal can transport you to a new country—without ever leaving Philly. Not only will you learn expert tips, you’ll add a new skill to your cooking resume. Plus, you can take mass transit to your destination.

5. Take a bike ride. Where isn’t a good place to ride in our region? Head out on the Schuylkill trail, explore Wissahickon Park, saddle up at Valley Forge. Wherever you ride, complete your date with an outdoor picnic. Grab a bottle of wine and local snacks to sit down and get to know each other better. You’ll burn calories, get outside and take advantage of our outdoor spots. Don’t own a bike? Rent one instead.


Julie Hancher is author of Green Philly Blog, where she shares the cheap & easy ways to become a little bit more sustainable – whether dating, working out or cooking. When she’s not testing new recipes or playing with her orange tabby cat, she enjoys long bike rides by the beach and playing kickball. Follow her tweets at @greenphillyblog.

Photo: Shutterstock