No matter what stage of the relationship you’re currently in with your partner, dating is important! In the beginning, it’s a great way to get to know each other and start building a friendship. If you’ve been married for awhile, dates are a great way to stay connected and focus on each other. But in the midst of a global pandemic, many of us are wondering “how can I connect with my partner while also staying safe?” Here are some ideas for the Cincinnati area:

Go on a food trail or tour

Cincinnati has really upped it’s culinary scene in the last several years. Make a day of exploring all the new offerings! When people think of Cincinnati, they don’t typically think of food trucks. But the reality is that we have several amazing options! Look up some local food trucks (such as here or here), and spend the day sampling your top picks! Just make sure you find out where they’re parked for that particular day.

If you’re a donut aficionado, try the Butler County Donut Trail. If you visit every shop and complete the passport, you get a free t-shirt! Or you can just pick a few that look extra yummy.

In true Cincinnati fashion, there’s a chili trail. I’d be willing to bet that if you’re from Cincinnati, you already have a favorite chili parlor. You might even feel very strongly about that opinion. But if you’re that confident, put it to the test! Let the battle of the 3-way commence!

Lastly, if you want a more formalized tour with less driving, consider Cincinnati Food Tours. There’s several different tours to choose from, and you’ll end up exploring more than just the food. You’ll be put in a group, where masks are required, and you’re outside for a good portion of the tour. This is a great way to be a tourist in your own city. You might find a new reason to love the Queen City!

Plan a picnic

If a food tour or trail feels like too much of a commitment, try a picnic instead! Choose your favorite Cincinnati park, or maybe try a new one. With the weather warming up, it’ll be super refreshing to spend some time outdoors. Pack a lunch, or even grab your favorite take out. Lay down a blanket, and spend time connecting while you eat.

Make it even more fun by bringing an activity to do together! Bring a frisbee, a deck of cards, or if you’re up for it, bring some art supplies! Take advantage of the beautiful park and gorgeous spring blooms by painting or drawing a landscape. You could even hang them in the house once you’re done to remember the day. It doesn’t matter what the activity is, as long as it’s something you’ll both enjoy.

Go to the zoo

I recognize this won’t be for everyone–some parents are at the zoo all the time. However, if you don’t have kids, or if your kids are grown, when is the last time you went to the zoo purely for your own pleasure? We’re so lucky to have the Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Gardens, which is consistently ranked as one of the top zoos in the U.S. If you haven’t recently, take advantage of it! Spring is a great time to go, because Zoo Blooms is in full effect! They have over 100,000 tulips that bloom every year. Personally, this sounds lovely after a long COVID winter. They also have some behind-the-scenes experiences, where you can engage with different animals up close, like elephants or penguins!

If the Cincinnati Zoo is too routine, consider a slightly longer trip to The Wilds, where you can go on a safari tour! If you haven’t heard of it, it’s an open-range safari park that is home to giraffes, cheetahs, zebras, and so much more. I haven’t personally been, but I’ve been told it’s like stepping into another world. Unlike traditional zoos, the animals aren’t kept in cages; they are free to roam around the park! It’s actually the largest wildlife conservation center in North America.

You can drive through the park and observe the animals on an open-air vehicle, go horseback riding, go zip-lining, and so much more! They even have overnight lodging options if you want to make a weekend of it! They are open May-October, so they’ll be opening shortly.

See a drive-in movie

Did you know that there are multiple drive-in movie theaters in the Cincinnati area? Have some true, “good, old-fashioned fun” and go see a movie in your car. If you have a truck, SUV, or van, you might even be able to cuddle up in the back with some pillows and blankets! Bring your own snacks if you want, or commit to the whole experience by visiting the concession stand for popcorn and candy!

Not all of the theaters have announced their opening dates for 2021 yet, but Starlight opened on March 19. Check each theater’s website and Facebook page for the latest updates.


I’ve heard from tons of couples lately who said that TopGolf was a super fun date with their partner. You’ll rent your own bay, and you can even order food and drinks while you play. If you’re unfamiliar with how TopGolf works, you can read about the concept (and also view their current COVID precautions) here. They have discounts for healthcare workers and teachers, and also discount days. If you and your partner want to engage in some healthy competition, make a bet on who will win! Loser has to give the winner a massage (or whatever other reward sounds fun)!