4 alternative Chicago date night ideas

Your schedules have magically aligned. You’ve booked the sitter. The kids aren’t sick. It’s actually happening. You’re having … a date night.

I’ll wait for those trumpets of fanfare to die down for a second.

Now, first and foremost, any night where you get to enjoy the company of the person with whom you chose to raise children is a good night. Of course, you don’t necessarily need to put on the Ritz to have a great night. But just in case you’re looking for something a wee bit more off-the-wall for your kid-free time than the same dinner-and-a-drink (or three) routine, consider one of these “alternative” date night ideas for your next big night out.

And don’t worry, we won’t tell anyone if you still talk about the kids all night.

Indoor skydiving

Like the idea of experiencing skydiving but wary of the whole jumping-out-of-a-perfectly-good-airplane notion (also known as the entire premise of skydiving)? As luck would have it, now you can experience skydiving without the help of any aircraft!

iFly is an indoor skydiving facility that allows you to experience skydiving through powerful wind tunnels. You are guided through the experience and the rush and are completely safe and protected the entire time. Finally, you can put all of those windy Chicago treks to good use!

Podcast taping

Chicago is the home to many a podcast, and going to a live taping can be a new way to take in some great local entertainment. WBEZ’s “Wait Wait … Don’t Tell Me” is taped regularly on Thursday evenings in the Loop. You can also check in on the Chicago Podcast Festival on Nov. 17-19, where you can see live tapings of many different types of podcasts. You’re sure to be entertained no matter what podcast you see!

Trapeze school

In case you’ve ever thought about running away to the circus (you know, instead of sitting through another PTA meeting), this is your chance to live out that dream.

Trapeze School New York offers an assortment of fun classes, but their flagship remains their trapeze classes. Soar through the air with the greatest of ease … or maybe fall a lot into the net. Either way, you’ll have an absolutely great time doing something you probably haven’t ever done before.


Okay, so, technically this might not be a date night per-say, but more of a group date night.

But repeat after me: Axe. Throwing.

A company that started in Canada (because where else would such an activity start) has finally reached America and landed in Chicago. Bad Axe Throwing is located in the West Loop. Be warned that you need a minimum of a group of eight on weekdays and 12 on weekends, so be sure to find some willing-and-able axe-throwing friends. Included in the experience is a personal guide who will help teach you how to throw said axes best. And, even better yet: Bad Axe Throwing is a BYOB facility.

Flannel is probably not recommended, but I really want everyone to wear flannel to this. Please?

Whether you want to sit and be entertained or get out and push your comfort zone, there are many alternative date nights available to you in this great city of ours. So what are you waiting for, other than the sitter, your schedules, the kids’ schedules and eight solar systems’ planets to all align at the same time? Get on out there!

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