If you’re like our family, one of your resolutions this year is to tighten belts and finally get on a budget. But that doesn’t mean you can’t still have a super-fun date night with your sweetie. Here are some ideas for totally affordable grown-up date nights.
Play a game at Game Knight Lounge. Game Knight Lounge on North Williams has a massive game library (like, floor-to-ceiling massive). After paying the $4 per person entry fee, you can choose from their library of over 500 games. Order the generous serving of nachos for $12 and you’ve got yourself a $20 date night for the two of you. 3037 N. Williams Ave., Portland
Get happy at happy hour at Portland City Grill. But Portland City Grill is so fancy! I know, I know! And the views are amazing! But their happy hour is super, super affordable. You can get pork riblets, poblano mac & cheese, jambalaya, a BBQ pulled pork sandwich, and lots more yummy options for way under $10. And craft cocktails come in at a bargain $7. Happy hour is from 4-7 pm and 9 to close Monday through Saturday, and all day Sunday. 111 5th Ave., Portland
Sip it up at Distillery Row. Distillery row is the grouping of eight distilleries in the SE industrial area that make vodka, brandy, whiskey and all sorts of artisan spirits. Stop in at one or two, or buy a distillery row passport for $20, which will get you a free tasting at all eight, plus three distilleries in the NW. See website for details.
Play like crazy during free play at Ground Kontrol. Every second Thursday from 5 pm to close, Ground Kontrol sets its games to free mode and lets you play over 70 video games for just a $5 per person cover charge. Hot dogs, chips & salsa, grilled cheese, and classic nachos are all under $5, and beer is $4. 115 NW 5th Ave., Portland
Snuggle up at an OMSI star party. OMSI hosts regular star parties throughout the year at Rooster Rock State Park and L.L. Stub Stewart State Park. Rose City Astronomers join in the fun to help you understand what you’re seeing up there through their powerful telescopes. The events are free with a $5 parking fee per vehicle. See their website for upcoming dates.
See art at Fridays at the Art Museum. Every Friday evening from 5 to 8 pm, the Portland Art Museum opens its door for only $5 admission. You can explore the exhibits on your own, or with friendly art guides. There are occasional special events, as well as beer, wine and food available for purchase at the Art Pub at the Café. 1219 SW Park Ave., Portland
Go roller skating at Oaks Park. Relive the glory years with a spin around the Oaks Park rink. You can skate to your heart’s (or knees’) content on Friday or Saturday evenings from 7 to 10:30 for $8 per person. Skate rental is an additional $2. 7805 SE Oaks Park Way, Portland. Or find other roller skating rinks here.
Play Bingo at Mississippi Pizza. Skating not retro enough? Every Monday night from 8 to 11, Mississippi Pizza hosts Bingo and Bourbon with Brian Perez. Bingo cards are $1 per board—and there are prizes! Grab a slice of pizza while you’re there for around $5. 3552 N. Mississippi Ave., Portland
Go for a soak at the Kennedy Pool. The Kennedy Pool’s soaking pool is heated and located in a private outdoor courtyard surrounded by gardens. It’s open to the public for $5 per person, per hour. And with no minors permitted after 6 pm, it’s a totally relaxing way to spend a few hours. 5736 NE 33rd Ave., Portland
See a movie. Yes, sometimes date nights are all about zoning out and seeing a movie. Save some money by heading to one of the area’s many discount movie theaters. Even the popcorn is cheap! Here’s a list of some of the area’s finest (and cheapest) theaters, usually coming in at around $5 per ticket.
Crimp your hair and go dancing at the Crystal Ballroom. Nearly every Friday, you can take part in an 80s video dance attack at the Crystal Ballroom. Across 10-foot screens, VJ Kittyrox projects classic videos from all the best 80s musicians. Get your 80s dance moves on and have a blast for just $7 per person. 1332 W. Burnside St., Portland
Go bowling at Grand Central. If you’re up for a weeknight or Sunday date night, you can have a super fun and affordable date night at Grand Central. Based on when you come, it’s just $4-6 per game. Go on a Tuesday and you can get $3 tacos. During happy hour (3-6 and 9:30 to close) the food menu is $5-7. 808 SE Morrison St., Portland
Treat yourself with a scoop at Cloud City ice cream. The very best part of being an adult is if you want to have ice cream for dinner, gosh darn it, you can have ice cream for dinner! Cloud City makes drool-worthy flavors like salted cookie dough, bourbon vanilla, dirty chai, and many others. Check it out, or one of the many others ice cream parlors town.
What’s your favorite budget date night idea? Let us know below!