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Lovely Ways to Celebrate Valentine's Day 2018

Romance abounds from the Great Plains to the Great Lakes. Here's a list of things to do around the Midwest for Valentine's Day.

Valentine's Day can be tough to plan when it falls in mid-week, as in 2018. But you can still make the day (or the whole week) special, at home or around town. Whatever you decide, it'll be lovelier with two.

All events are Wednesday, February 14 unless otherwise noted.

GRT Hot Glass Studio. Photo courtesy of Kenyon's Creations.


See some priceless art, or craft some of your own.

Where can I find inspiration?

  • Cleveland — A Painters Love & Hip Hop: Valentine’s Paint & Sip; Feb. 9.
  • Indianapolis — Valentine's Day Hot Glass Art Class at GRT Hot Glass Studio.
  • Kansas City, Missouri — Valentine’s Dinner at Rozzelle Court Restaurant; Feb. 16.
  • Milwaukee — Valentine’s Dinner at the Milwaukee Art Museum.
  • St. Louis — Hearts for Art at the St. Louis Art Museum; Feb. 9-11, 13-14.

Saint Louis Art Museum.

Hearts for Art. Photo courtesy of the St. Louis Art Museum.

Dance & Music

“If music be the food of love, play on,” Shakespeare once wrote. Bust out some new moves, put on your dancing shoes on and feel the rhythm this Valentine’s Day. It doesn’t matter how good you are at it, so long as your dancing partner can keep up. Or catch a concert, because music is the true language of love.

Where can I feel the beat?

  • Ashland, Nebraska — Swing Under the Wings at the Strategic Air Command & Aerospace Museum; Feb. 10. 
  • Bismarck, North Dakota — Bismarck-Mandan Civic Chorus Valentine’s Day Concert; Feb. 13. 
  • Chicago — Valentine’s Ball; Feb. 9. 
  • Chicago — Dirty Dancing Party; Feb 9, 14. 
  • Cincinnati — FREE Valentine’s Day Dance Party at the Arthur Murray Dance Center. 
  • Cleveland — Love in Cleveland featuring Helen Welch and Ernie Krivda; Feb. 9. 
  • Des Moines — Sweetheart Dance at the Blank Park Zoo; Feb. 9. 
  • Detroit — Valentine’s Day Soul Jam with The Manhattans. 
  • Harrison, Ohio — Southern Ohio Bikers Valentine's Dance 2018
  • Little Falls, Minnesota — Great River Arts Valentine’s Day Show; Feb. 10. 
  • Madison, Wisconsin — Richly Romantic, featuring cellist Alban Gerhardt; Feb. 16-18. 
  • St. Louis – Jacquees Love & R&B Pre-Valentine’s Day Concert; Feb. 3. 
  • St. Louis — Rock ‘n Roll Valentine’s Dance at the Casa Loma Ballroom; Feb. 17. 

Swing Under the Wings at the Strategic Air Command & Aerospace Museum

Swing Under the Wings. Photo courtesy of the Strategic Air Command & Aerospace Museum.

Food & Drink

What’s Valentine’s Day without a romantic dinner?

Where can I find some sweet eats?

  • Madison, Ohio — Valentine’s Day Dinner at Debonne Vineyards; Feb. 16.
  • Omaha — Valentine’s Day Dinner at Lauritzen Gardens.
  • St. Croix Falls, Wisconsin — ValenWine’s Tasting at Chateau St. Croix Winery; Feb. 10-11.
  • St. Louis — Untamed Hearts: Valentine’s Day Dinner at the zoo; Feb. 9-10.
  • St. Louis — Valentine’s Dinner at Lemp Mansion; Feb. 9-11, 14.
  • Cleveland — Bubbles Because It’s Valentine’s Day wine tasting; Feb. 10.

Family Time

There are more people to love than your partner. Below are some fun events for the whole family to enjoy.

Where can I spread the love?

  • Chicago — Valentine’s Chocolate Family Festival; Feb. 10. 
  • Des Moines — Mommy & Me: Sweetheart Dance fundraiser for underprivileged, at-risk and special needs children; Feb. 11. 
  • Noblesville, Indiana — Family Valentine’s Day at Nickel Plate Arts; Feb. 10. 
  • Solon, Ohio — Sweet Valentine’s Day Princess Party; Feb. 11. 


Chocolate & Beer Valentine’s Day 5K & 10K. Photo courtesy of Key Sports & MikeCImages.

Chocolate & Beer Valentine’s Day 5K & 10K . Photo courtesy of Key Sports & MikeCImages.

A Lovely Workout

Don’t run from love. Instead, jog a 5K for Val’s Day, and raise some money for a good cause.

Where can I run?

  • Annapolis, Michigan — Valentine’s Day 5K; Feb. 10.  
  • Des Moines — Red Flannel Run at the Wellmark YMCA; Feb. 10.  
  • Dayton, Ohio — Chocolate & Beer Valentine’s Day 5K & 10K; Feb. 17.  
  • Gray Summit, Missouri— Valentine’s Night Hike; Feb. 10.  
  • Madison, Wisconsin — Valentine’s Day 5K; Feb. 10.  
  • Waterloo, Nebraska — Two River’s Valentine’s Day 5K; Feb. 10.  
  • St. Louis — Run for the Chocolate; Feb. 10.  
  • Saint Paul — Valentine’s Day TC 5K, presented by the Minneapolis Heart Institute Foundation; Feb. 10.

More to See

If you're in Michigan, you might enjoy tea with a Mary Todd Lincoln presenter. For Minnesotans, tune in to NPR’s Kevin Kling live in St. Paul.

  • Amery, Wisconsin — Love Poems for St. Valentine’s Day; Feb. 10.
  • Columbus, Minnesota — Valentine’s Day Comedy Show.
  • Cary, Illinois — Valentine’s Day Comedy Show; Feb. 17.
  • St. Paul — Kevin Kling & Friends: “The Love Show.”
  • Westland, Michigan — Valentine’s Tea with Mary Todd Lincoln at Westland Historic Village Park; Feb. 10.

Movie Date

Maybe you'd just like a movie night. , which premiered last month, tells the story of two loves: country music and a country girl. In the romance, country music star Liam Page (Alex Roe) left his bride-to-be (Jessica Rothe) at the altar so that he could pursue country stardom, but his memory was never able to shake his true love back home. It’s based on the 2012 novel of the same name by best-selling author Heidi McLaughlin.

Or you can stay home and see Kumail Nanjiani’s and Michael Showalter’s  (pick it up at Redbox or via streaming). Released in summer 2017, it's a timeless story of love across cultures.



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