Valentine’s Day is fast approaching, which means you might be in need of some unique date night or family ideas. Regardless of who your particular “boo” might be this year (S.O., bestie, mini-me, etc.), planning the right, meaningful activity for celebrating not just them, but more importantly your partnership together, can be a major undertaking.
Which is exactly why we’ve rounded up the top 20 Valentine’s Day themed events around New Jersey that are more than your typical candle-lit evening. From a DIY succulent terrarium workshop to help you make the perfect gift and a dreamy after-hours aquarium experience, to a magical masked ball and a family skate night, these 20 unique Valentine-themed happenings are meant to be enjoyed by more than just one sweetheart.
1. Annual Valentine’s Day Plunge, Manasquan
Saturday, February 3, 2018 | 12:00PM
Are you ready to take the plunge? We’re not talking about tying the knot, but rather the 12th Annual Valentine’s Day Plunge in Manasquan. Dubbed “the Ultimate Ice Bucket Challenge”, all donations and proceeds from the fundraiser go towards supporting ALS patients. The event offers options for individual or team registration, or you can be a spectator if jumping into the freezing cold Atlantic Ocean isn’t your thing.
Main Beach in Manasquan, NJ
Cost: donations at discretion
2. For the Love of Wine
Wednesday, February 7, 2018 | 7:00PM to 9:00PM
Get social over a deluxe wine tasting event at Sorellina Italian Kitchen & Wine Bar in honor of Valentine’s Day. A certified Sommelier and staff will teach you about six different wines from Italy, including tastings of each and small palate-cleansing snacks. “Love the Wine You’re With” during this night out in Hoboken!
Sorellina Italian Kitchen & Wine Bar
1036 Washington Street, Hoboken, NJ 07030
3. Family Date Night at Jenkinson’s Boardwalk
Friday, February 9 and Saturday, February 10, 2018 | 6:00PM to 9:00PM
Enjoy a fun-filled evening at the boardwalk by celebrating Valentine’s Day with the whole family. This family date night package includes admission to Jenkinson’s Aquarium, pizza and soda at the Pavilion, vouchers for the arcade, and treats from the Sweet Shop. Forget about “Be Mine” hearts and go for some salt-water taffy instead at the shore!
300 Ocean Ave, Point Pleasant Beach, NJ 08742
Cost: $54.95 for package of four
4. Annual Valentine’s Day Chocolate Walk
Friday, February 9, 2018 | 6:00PM to 9:00PM
Eat chocolate while getting fit. Kidding, a leisurely stroll arm-in-arm with your sweetheart will be the hardest pace you’ll do as you check out the local businesses in downtown Bordentown and sample sweet treats. For added fun, you’ll receive a “passport” from the Downtown Bordentown Association, which will be stamped by each business as you stop in. Hand over your fully-stamped passport to be entered for a chance to win a gift certificate!
Farnsworth Ave., Bordentown, NJ 08505
5. The Masked Ball at Lambert Castle
Friday, February 9, 2018 | 7:00PM to 11:00PM
Happily ever after? The Passaic County Historical Society presents the annual Valentine’s Day Masquerade Ball. What better reason to wear a beautiful mask, dress up, and enjoy a night out dancing with your special someone? Scrumptious desserts and a cash bar will be available. Leave the kids at home as only 21+ will be admitted.
3 Valley Road, Paterson, NJ 07506
Cost: $25 per person,
Reservations: (973) 247-0085
6. Cupid’s Chase 5K
Saturday, February 10, 2018 | 10:00AM to 1:00PM
The Cupid’s Chase 5K supports people with disabilities through their annual fundraiser. Walkers, runners, and rollers alike are all welcome to participate! For those not keen to cold weather, Community Options, Inc. offers a virtual participant option to still support the cause.
1226 Passmore Street, Moorestown, NJ 08057
7. Art from the Heart
Saturday, February 10, 2018 | 10:30AM to 1:00PM
The Saturday before Valentine’s Day, bring your family and get artsy with the Princeton University Art Museum during their Saturday morning family art sessions. Through an engaging gallery activity, you will learn about the love stories that inspired pieces in the Museum’s collection, then make your own love-inspired art project!
Princeton University Art Museum
Elm Drive, Princeton, NJ, 08544
8. Valentine’s Day Pop-Up Shop
Saturday, February 10, 2018 | 10:00AM to 2:00PM
Looking for a gift for your Valentine? Look no further than the pop-up shop hosted by the Downtown Vendors of Bordentown-Trenton. More than 10 local vendors will be present, featuring a variety of items like handmade cosmetics, jewelry, and more! Two psychics will also be on hand, for those who seek a little love advice.
Holiday Inn Express Bordentown-Trenton South
195 US-130, Bordentown, New Jersey 08505
9. Wine and Chocolate Trail Weekend
Saturday, February 10 and Sunday February 11, 2018 | 12:00PM to 5:00PM
What’s better than a weekend of wine and chocolate to get you in the Valentine’s spirit? Head over to Terhune Orchards for fresh baked goods paired with award-winning wines made right from their own vineyards. You’ll snuggle together in front of the toasty fire pit or inside the cozy wine barn – this sounds like a successful recipe for love.
330 Cold Soil Road, Princeton, NJ 08540
Cost: $20 per person
10. Date Night at Turtle Back Zoo
Saturday, February 10, 2018 | 6:00PM to 10:00PM
Get wild at Turtle Back Zoo for an adults-only date night to get you out of any couple’s rut. You’ll learn all about the dating habits and mating rituals of resident animals at the Turtle Back Zoo, while learning about species breeding programs. A buffet-style dinner, complimentary drink, dessert, behind the scenes tour, up-close animal presentation and education program are all included with the purchase of a ticket. A cash bar will also be available.
Turtle Back Zoo
560 Northfield Ave, West Orange, NJ 07052
Cost: $55 for single tickets, $100 for couples tickets
11. Frenchie Kisses
Sunday, February 11, 2018 | 11:00AM to 2:00PM
Never underestimate the power of a sloppy kiss and a wet nose on a bad day. Join the French Bulldog Rescue Network at their Valentine’s Day fundraiser and frenchie meetup, all proceeds made at the event will benefit the organization’s Frenchies in foster care. Enjoy baked goods and handmade crafts for sale, and a Frenchie Kissing Booth – where you’ll likely get some action, if you know what we mean. Anyone who wants to attend is welcome, with or without a Frenchie of their own.
Bill’s Wonderland of Pets
804 N. White Horse Pike, Magnolia, NJ 08049
Cost: Free admission, purchase of fundraising items
12. Valentine’s Day Mommy and Me Yoga Workshop
Sunday, February 11, 2018 | 10:00AM to 11:00AM
Let your little one join in on your weekend morning yoga routine as Kids Fit NJ hosts a Valentine’s Day themed Mommy and Me yoga class. The workshop will focus on love and partner yoga. You and your mini-me will even get to take home expressions of love when you make a Valentine’s Day themed craft.
551 Park Ave, Scotch Plains, NJ 07076
13. Valentine’s Market and Brunch
Sunday, February 11, 2018 | 12:00PM to 5:00PM
The third annual Valentine’s Market and Brunch, hosted by the Asbury Park Bazaar, will feature countless vendors, food, activities, and crafts. Local vendors will sell handmade gifts ranging from art and candles, to accessories and home goods. All ages can enjoy the event, and live music by New Brunswick based band, Hey Bulldog, will cover Beatles songs.
1300 Ocean Avenue, Asbury Park, NJ 07712
14. DIY Valentine’s Succulent Terrarium Workshop
Sunday, February 11, 2018 | 4:00PM to 5:00PM
Fancy yourself a handmade gift for your significant other? Amber & Earth is hosting a succulent terrarium workshop at the Asbury Park Valentine’s Market. All materials will be provided and anyone can join in on the step-by-step instruction.
1300 Ocean Avenue, Asbury Park, NJ 07712
15. Paint & Sip
Sunday, February 11, 2018 | 4:00PM to 7:00PM
Haitian artist Jean-Claude Francois brings dope vibes and dope art to his first Paint & Sip event for Valentine’s Day. Open to both singles and couples, the event will include art materials, food, and two glasses of wine. Create a masterpiece for a loved one or alongside them!
6 E Kinney St, Newark, NJ 07102
16. Valentine’s Day Chocolate and Roses Tap Takeover
Tuesday, February 13, 2018 | 6:00PM to 11:45PM
In honor of Valentine’s Day, HOPS is celebrating couples by pairing together two great things: chocolate and beer. Each chocolate beer is paired with a “rose” or “strawberry” themed beer, featuring craft items from local breweries. Enjoy a Valentine’s Eve date night out in Morristown at the Chocolate & Roses Tap Takeover!
18 Washington Street, Morristown, NJ 07960
Cost: $ of drinks
17. Valentine’s Day Skate
Wednesday, February 14, 2018 | 6:00PM to 9:00PM
For a cool night filled with retro vibes, kick it back old-school and go skating at BBP Valentine’s Day Skate. Fun for the whole family or just for two, this event is the perfect pre-bedtime outing – and what screams “LOVE” more than couple-skating to “The Time of My Life”?
7th Ave at Clifton Ave, Newark, NJ 07104
Cost: $3 admission, $4 skate rental
18. Valentine’s Day Cruise
Wednesday, February 14, 2018 | 6:00PM to 10:00PM
Cruise the New York Harbor with Spirit Cruises. Unmatched views of the city skyline, an organic dinner menu, and DJ entertainment and dancing will sweep you off your feet. Hop aboard now!
Lincoln Harbor Marina
Weehawken, NJ 07086
Cost: $130 per person
19. Dinner at The Windlass, Lake Hopatcong
Wednesday, February 14, 2018 | 4:00PM to 10:00PM
The way to a man’s heart is through his stomach. No doubt this will be the case when you enjoy a decadent Valentine’s Day dinner at the Windlass prepared by their renowned executive chef and culinary team. Prized pianist Annie Abrams will be upping the ambience to another level. As Alan Wolfelt says, “food is symbolic of love when words are inadequate.” A children’s menu will also be available, making the evening inclusive for your whole family.
45 Nolans Point Park Rd, Lake Hopatcong, NJ 07849
Cost: Entrees range from $20 to $40
20. That’s A-Moray: Love Below Sea Level
Friday, February 16, 2018 | 7:00PM to 11:00PM
Wander the Adventure Aquarium after-hours and be treated to a dreamy experience only for adults at the 4th Annual Valentine’s Event hosted by Center for Aquatic Sciences. Enjoy a behind-the-scenes look at ocean realm exhibits and learn about the “Wet & Wild” mating habits of your favorite ocean animals. Includes wine or beer, buffet dinner and dessert, and a cash bar.
1 Riverside Drive, Camden, NJ 08103
Cost: $175 per couple