1. Take a day trip
Summer is all about going on adventures with the people you love. You have to treat every day like it’s a never-ending popsicle for you to suck on and not give a damn if the sweet juice sticks to your fingers and makes everything a mess. Summer is inherently dirty. If you’re not getting a little scuffed up, you’re doing it wrong.
A cheap and easy way to start getting your feet dirty with your significant other is to go somewhere, anywhere, that’s not where you live. Drive to the beach, to a swimming hole, to a river, or to a faraway park. It really doesn’t matter, does it? The point is to just get away with the person you adore and experience something different together. Practically anything new is considered to be romantic. You get 10,000 relationship points just for THINKING of something that’s not the same old thing. Growing up in Southern California, I would always go to little towns like Ojai or Summerland for the day and I swear to God, even if my BF and I didn’t do anything exciting there, it would still be enough for us to feel happy and reenergized. The beauty about summer is that it can make possibilities seem endless. Now maybe that’s just the delusions caused from heat stroke but whatever it is, you have to take advantage of your fleeting optimism and get out of dodge.
2. Go to the state fair
I grew up in Ventura, California, a beach town that is famous for its annual summer fair. For the entire month of August, my friends and I would spend every day riding roller coasters, eating funnel cake, seeing terrible bands, and occasionally petting pigs. Fairs are amazing. They take everything America stands for and then they deep fry it like a Twinkie. Where else can you eat fried dough, hang out with farm animals and see a washed up ’80s hair metal band all in the span of a half hour?
I know state fairs aren’t necessarily evocative of “ROMANCE” and “HOT DATE” but they are hilarious and absurd and nothing brings two people faster together than humor. So hold each other tight as you put your life in the hands of a carnie named Bubba and ride a rickety roller coaster. Spend $20 playing a game and end up winning a teddy bear with one eye for your girlfriend! Rub your partner’s belly in bed as they suffer from gastrointestinal issues from all the terrible food they ate earlier. Do it! To find out where you can have your very own slice of poisoned American pie this summer, check out the state fairs directory.
3. GO NIGHT SWIMMING
I mean, this is so obvious. Not only does swimming provide much needed relief from the scorching sun, it’s also fun and super romantic. Come on. The night time? A swimming pool?! Summer is basically giving couples a gift and being like, “Hey, I’m going to make it unbearably hot for the next three months so people will want to wear less clothes and be in the mood to make out 24/7.” You’d be a fool not to utilize it.
4. Go to a baseball game
I hate doing anything that’s remotely strenuous on a date. Call me crazy but I want someone to see the best version of myself, not the real, sweaty, disgusting version who can barely throw a ball. Whenever I watch dating reality shows, I get heart palpitations because they always end up doing something insane together like jumping out of an airplane or going rock climbing. Are you kidding me? If the person I was going on a date with handed me a parachute and was like, “Nice to meet you. Now get ready to jump from a plane, babe!” I would scream bloody murder before parachuting myself back to my apartment.
Granted, there is something that’s bonding about two people going out of their comfort zone but sometimes all it takes is watching someone else break a sweat for you to feel satisfied. Sports games make for perfect dates because they allow you to eat greasy food, drink, and yell mean things at people you don’t know. How romantic! No, but really. Getting riled up is hot. Anger leads to passion. Passion leads to you know what. While going to a baseball game may not seem like your idea of heaven, envision having this conversation with your BF/GF before you pass judgment:
Your BF/GF: Go Dodgers!
You: Really, you’re rooting for them?
Your BF/GF: Yeah, so what?
You: Nothing. That’s just, like, really embarrassing for you. But that’s fine!
Your BF/GF: You like the other team? Are you insane and/or blind?
You: No. Weird that I didn’t know I was dating a literal psychopath who roots for subpar American sports teams. I’m so glad I know now, though!
Your BF/GF: How dare you! I will defend the Dodgers till the day I die! If you don’t like it, you can just leave!
You: Fine, I will!
JK, I’m not going anywhere, hon. I love it when you care about stuff. It really shows me that you’re an ideal life partner whose passion will weather any and all of our relationship storms.
Your BF/GF: That’s hot.
*Cue make out session*
5. Stay in and make margaritas
At a certain point in the summer, you have to be like “no’ to going outside and stay in with your AC cranked up. This is a great opportunity though for you to catch up on some reading, do the crossword puzzle and…oh screw it. Let’s be real, the most fun you can have indoors is making cocktails with your significant other. I love margaritas so much, it’s almost embarrassing. When I sweat in the summer, it’s 1% water and 99% tequila. What I find even more fun than drinking a frozen marg with friends at happy hour is making them in the comfort of your own home with your special person. Not only is it fun to see if you can make a cocktail better than the one you pay a fortune for in a restaurant or a bar, it’s also an activity that requires the best kind of team work. Then, while each holding your hard-earned margaritas, you two can retire to the couch, put the fan directly on your face and melt in a pool of summer love.