Sure, you could do what you always do and scramble to make plans at the last minute, but why not do yourself and your partner a favour and get wise to what’s going on around the city? You could always use the brownie points.
The NBA All-Star Game is in Toronto this year, so why not bond over ball? Just make sure you and bae are on the same page about who you’re rooting for to prevent potential Valentine’s drama. Tickets for the big game might be hard to come by, but between hands-on instructional clinics and celebrity games, there are plenty of special events happening throughout the city around the main event. Check out nba.com for a full schedule.
FEB 12-14 | $12-$39
Wavelength’s annual festival has become a Valentine’s Day weekend tradition, and this year the music series’ flagship event celebrates its sweet 16 with performances from 18 emerging acts across genres, including shows from FOXTROTT, Keita Juma, Duchess Says, Beliefs, Soupcans, Thus Owls, She-Devils, and more at concerts running Feb. 12-14. The majority of the events take place at the Garrison, so no excuses for ducking out on a dinner date or two here: cozy up in the seated front room between bands for a fish taco or three. While most shows are 19+, the Saturday matinee at the Markham House City Building Lab featuring Foxes in Fiction, Merganzer, and Steven Lambke is an all ages event. All events are $12 in advance / $16 at the door.
FEB 12, 14 | $6.98-$50
There are few places in the city as immediately enchanting and fascinating as the sprawling tanks at Ripley’s Aquarium, so why not pay them a visit with your special someone and spend Valentine’s Day under the sea? Swim on by during regular hours or join the aquarium for one of its two special events this Valentine’s Day weekend: the February edition of their Friday Night Jazz (Feb 12) and its Deep Sea Soirée (Feb 14). The Soirée is a 19+ event ($50), while Friday Night Jazz programming is open to the whole family with tickets starting at $6.98 for children aged 3-5. Cash bars are available throughout the aquarium for both events.
It’s a classic for a reason. For a more traditional Valentine’s Day date, make reservations at your favourite restaurant or a fancier spot you’ve been meaning to try. Many spots like Drake One Fifty, Frings, Parcae, and Ufficio are serving multi-course meals at prix fixe rates. But get on that quick – table reservations are filling up fast.
CHOCOLATE, MEDITATION & MASSAGE | FEB. 14, 2:30-4PM
In this workshop at Studio Blue Yoga, instructor Kassandra Prus invites lovers to engage in contemplative practice and get to know each other on a higher level through meditation, massage, and chocolate. Beginning with some therapeutic self massage, the workshop will move onto a mindful eating exercise involving chocolate, followed by some partner practices involving longer held supported stretches and meditations that encourage Valentines to connect without words.
FEB. 14-15 | $25-$35
By the Second City’s count, the improvisational comedy theatre has been looking at and laughing about relationships for over 55 years, and that makes them pretty reliable authorities on the subject if you ask us. With a cast consisting of Roger Bainbridge, Brandon Hackett, Devon Hyland, Lindsay Mullan, Ann Pornel, and Alessandra Vite, they’ve put together a 90-minute sketch relationship revue that promises a modern mix of romance, rancor, and everything in between. Expect hilarious scenes about missed connections, girls’ night out adventures, and all the outrageous things we do for love. (Dinner and group packages available.)
CITY HEARTS: WINTER IS COMING TOUR-HOUSE, TECHNO & LOVE
FEB 14, 9PM | $21-$40+
From the minds behind Desert Hearts, Summerdaze, Bespoke.Experience, Dirty Decibels, and Way of Acting comes a night of house, techno, art, and gourmet food for the thumping hearts. It all goes down in a 15,000-square-foot, floor-to-ceiling windowed warehouse space long retired from its industrial past as a manufacturing plant.
FEB 14 12-2PM | $32.40
This Theatre Centre Valentine’s event hosted by eco-beauty professional Maya Goldenberg offers up a relationship instructional for the craftier Valentines, promising to teach all about the ins and outs of toxic products, how to avoid them in the bedroom, and even some suggestions for safer, greener alternatives. Activities include making personalized, edible massage oils and a DIY love jar (BYOJar).
FEB 14, 2-5PM | 19+ | $15 ADVANCE / $20 DOORS
Maybe you’re single, or maybe you and your partner just can’t get into all the commercial spirit around February 14. But when it comes down to it, you still want an excuse for a special night out. This anti-love-in from the minds behind Battle Sports is designed for the Hallmark holiday you love to hate. Swing by to shoot Cupid’s targets in a special archery tournament, or just let out all your wrath in the Rage Room (additional fees apply). There’s a dating game for all the people that want to believe, too. Cash bar available.