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Participants enjoy the view of the Pittsburgh skyline from a kayak.

Ever wish Valentine’s Day was in the Summer?

By: Stephanie Capilongo
Ever wish Valentine’s Day was in the Summer? Where date ideas go beyond restaurants. You could go kayaking? Swimming? Hiking? Biking? Watch the sunset? Sounds great right? Unfortunately, living in Pittsburgh limits our outdoor creativity for Valentines Day. But what if I told you there is a solution where you can spend Valentine’s Day outdoors.
Health Benefits
Afraid of Pittsburgh winter? A few health benefits may well convince you it’s not “all that bad”. Winter activities boost your immune system; Therefore you and your partner are less likely to get sick, and your energy levels improve too. Also, a healthy dose of Vitamin D, especially when experiencing it together, can enhance your mood.
Winter Outdoor Dates
Go on a hike. This is slightly different than your typical Valentine Date. Hiking allows you to spend quality time with each other. There are little to no interruptions on the trail. You can engage in deeper conversations, and hiking is proven to relieve the winter blues. Here are some popular hiking trails around Pittsburgh!

Fear the cold will distract you from conversation?
Layer up. Research before you trek in the cold. Bring extra layers and socks. This leaves little room for error and can help avoid an argument. If you’re moving, and your layers are effective, you’ll be more prepared. Check out REI’s guide on layering up.

Not a fan of hiking on trails? Luckily Pittsburgh has numerous urban hikes. You and your significant other can explore the neighborhoods of Pittsburgh, it’s like an outdoor art exhibit. You can take in the urban atmosphere while making stops at local coffee shops and breweries. Check out the article by Next Pittsburgh that gives you some of their favorite urban hikes and routes.

On one of your urban hikes, don’t forget to bring a love lock. This tradition dates back 100 years ago during World War I. It’s a tradition that is widely famous for connecting you and your partner to a location and throwing out the key to symbolize a lasting love. What’s a better place for a lock of love than on one of Pittsburgh’s many bridges. Here are the top love lock bridges in Pittsburgh.
1. Roberto Clemente Bridge
2. Rachel Carson Bridge
3. Andy Warhol Bridge
4. Schenley Park Bridge
Want more of an adventure?
Pittsburgh has numerous ice skating rinks, where you and your partner can challenge each other on the ice. Not only is ice skating a test of balance for yourself but also for your partner. It challenges both to work in unison, and if you fall, the other will catch you. Think of it like the ultimate test of physical and mental strength.
Then there is skiing. Skiing is unique, and whether it’s your first time or your 50th, it is a guaranteed fun and exhilarating date idea. It will provide endorphins to enhance your mood which can only be good for your relationship.
Be Unique
Don’t settle on a date where you’re stuck indoors and barely able to hear each other. Spend it right by going outdoors. It’s open yet quiet so that conversations are heard and memories are made.

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