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Looking for love in all the right places

Ah, young love.

Dating is college is like—who am I kidding; I’m not going to tell you what college dating is like. Dating in college has its own set of rules — ones that no one ever seems to be able to keep up with — and its own set of perks and pitfalls.

Excuse me while I re-download Tinder. And then delete it again, because I remember how much it sucks.

Dating is hard. It doesn’t matter if you’re in high school, college, a “young professional” (ugh, I hate that term), or even 60. There’s no winning.

Dating, especially in college, comes with its fair share of horror stories. The one-night-stand you keep running into at Pete’s, or the weird coffee date who ended up being your TA. All those awkward moments eventually turn into great stories and maybe you will meet someone who makes it all worth it. This person gives you a reason to not wear sweatpants all winter long. They make late nights at the Killam bearable, walking to class a walk in the park, and all the other corny shit that comes along with dating in this student world we live in.

So, if you’re lucky enough to have found this person, take advantage of it. Halifax truly is an amazing city, with an endless amount of things to do and places to explore. Don’t be lazy. I know it’s tempting to curl up with your SO and binge Netflix all day. We’ve all done it. And I know first dates are awkward. So grab that cutie from class, or even grab your best friend and try out one of the many cool things Halifax has to offer.

For the first date…

There’s nothing worse than small talk and get-to-know-ya questions, but there are ways you can make it less awkward:

Grab a beer at Tom’s Little Havana: There’s nothing like a little alcohol to calm the jitters of a first date, and Tom’s has a great selection. Nestled off the beaten track, Tom’s offers a cozy little atmosphere you’ll instantly adore. There are board games and cards to give you something to do. You never know, one beer could turn into two.

See a show at Yuk Yuks: I have no scientific proof, but laughing is probably one of the best aphrodisiacs. Did you know that on Thursday nights, students can enjoy world-class comedy for only $5? They also serve food and drinks, so why not make a whole night out of it.

For the adventurous type…

Have a bonfire at Long Lake Provincial Park: In the winter, the lake is relatively quiet. Jump on the bus at sunset, bring some blankets and hot chocolate and snuggle up on one of the small beaches. Just make sure you don’t miss the last bus home.

Go skating! Or snowshoeing! Skates are free at the Emera Oval. Bundle up, and who cares if you embarrass yourself. First person to fall buys the BeaverTails.

Take a trip out to Sugar Moon Farm: If you have access to a car, this is a trip you have to make. Experience a classic Canadian sugar shack, take a hike around the farm before grabbing lunch in the restaurant, and then finish off the day by pouring maple syrup over snow and eating it. Can’t get more Canadian than that.

For the foodies…

Go out for an amazing meal: Halifax has a stupid amount of cool restaurants, funky hidden bars and tons of great food. If you’re on a budget, try having dinner at Baba Ghanouj on Barrington: the food is excellent and you’ll be surprised at the amount you get. Or, if you’re feeling fancy, try the Bicycle Thief then take a stroll on the boardwalk.

For the artsy ones…

Try Paint Nite: Durty Nelly’s and Rock Bottom Brew Pub both host Paint Nites a few times a month. Grab some food and drinks and learn how to paint a masterpiece. It’s easier than you think.

See some live music: Halifax is notorious for its diverse music scene. See some blues at Bearly’s or catch an old school rock show at The Carleton.

For something different…

Throw it back, who says we’re too old for the classics. Go bowling, try cosmic bingo, or glow in the dark mini putt. Shake the typical bar scene and be a little silly for a night. You might find a hidden talent.

Take a twist on your average movie night. The Oxford Theatre is an old fashioned cinema that usually shows local or independent films. It’s a cool experience, and then grab some happy hour sushi at Wasabi House after.

Honestly, the list goes on and on. Not matter what the kind of person you are, or the kind of relationship you’re in, there’s something you should try. So take advantage of dating in this beautiful city. You’ll be happy you did.

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