17 Mostly Inexpensive Date Ideas Around Indianapolis

The thought of date nights can be intimidating. We’re too busy. I don’t have anything to wear. It makes me sad to lave the baby. We don’t have the money. We don’t have anyone to watch the kids. Life is just too hectic right now. There are always a million reasons not to go. But at the end of the day, when your babies are grown and have babies of their own, it’s your spouse who will still be by your side. Make the time now so that when that day comes, you’re sharing life with a trusted confidant and your best friend and not a stranger. Date your spouse. Your future self with thank you for it.

Whether you enjoy being silly together, trying new things, or just staying home and being intentional about a date night in, check out a few ways my husband and I keep our marriage exciting.

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 Out and About in the City

  • Koteewi Archery: We’re all about trying new things and getting outside our comfort zone, so archery was a super fun and inexpensive way to do that. Plus, it was pretty hot to see how skilled my marksman was.
  • Take a class: We’ve made it a tradition to take a different class together each year. Since living in Indianapolis, we’ve taken a chocolate connoisseur class and a healthy cooking class. It’s fun to get to know your spouse in a new context.
  • Do something adventurous: Fly in a hot air balloon or go skydiving. Those kind of shared experiences will create memories for years to come and will leave you saying, “I can’t believe we did that!”
  • Volunteer: Serving others together gives you the opportunity to give back and see your spouse in their purest form. Our favorite place to donate our time is Gleaners.
  • Flix Brewhouse: There are dozens of movie theaters around Indianapolis, but when we kick back, we like to kick back in style. You can check out the latest movie, eat a meal while you watch, and even enjoy an adult beverage or two.
  • Murder Mystery Dinner: Let your flair for drama be known as you help act out a murder mystery and work to figure who dunnit. We felt ridiculous staying in character and maintaining our accents, but we shared lots of laughs and secret embarrassed glances.
  • Comedy Club: Indianapolis has several options, but our favorites are Morty’s and Cracker’s. Some comedians can be a little crude, but overall, we appreciate the side splitting laughter.
  • The Indiana Repertory Theatre: We love seeing shows put on by local talent. It’s so much fun to support and be part of the community.
  • The Central Library: Indianapolis has some pretty impressive libraries, but our favorite is the one located downtown. It’s gorgeous, has lots of free programs, and even features a little cafe where you can order drinks named after story book characters. We love to sip coffee and discuss plans for upcoming travel. We’re always planning something!
  • World Wide Marriage Encounter: Take a weekend to do a retreat that specifically targets improving your marriage. Our weekend took our marriage from good to great and gave us the opportunity to focus on nothing but one another. We can’t recommend it highly enough.

Out in Nature

  • Take a hike along the Monon Trail and stop at Huddle’s when you’re done. It’s one of our weekly traditions when the weather’s warm.
  • Pack a picnic breakfast and hang out at Eagle Creek Park or Fort Harrison State Park for the morning. We love eating for free and getting exercise in on the same date. When the weather’s evenly remotely nice, you’ll usually find us outside.

Staying In

Date night doesn’t have to mean leaving the house. Almost every night after we’ve put the baby to bed, we turn off our technology, turn on Pandora’s jazz station and enjoy the hours in our day that are meant just for one another.

  • Have a sleepover: Just because you have a nice, comfortable bed doesn’t mean you can’t have a little good old fashioned fun. Break out the sleeping bags, pop some popcorn, and make some indoor s’mores to enjoy together. While you’re hanging out, create a bucket list and hang it somewhere you’ll see it daily.
  • Game night: Call us old souls, but we love playing cards and drinking tea together. It gives us a chance to talk about our days, dream about the future, and reminisce about the past. We have a special notebook that keeps track of our never-ending games.
  • Adopt similar hobbies: Go running together. Read the same book. Watch the same TV show. We’ve watched so many of the same shows that sometimes we exclusively talk to one another through inside jokes we acquired through them. It can be embarrassing. We caution you on this one.
  • Travel together: Prepare dishes authentic to a country you’ve always wanted to travel to together. Listen to music from that country. Be festive and create decorations. Watch a movie that features that country or a documentary that teaches you new information. Go all out.
  • Get intimate: Create your own spa night and give one another massages. Make or buy massage oil. Look up massage techniques online or checkout a book on massage from the library. This is bound to be a husband favorite.

Our mentality is to turn everything we can into a date. I’m not joking when I say we treat going to Petsmart to buy our dog’s food as a date. Your mentality on making your time together special is the most important thing. And if all else fails, you can always just resort to Netflix and chilling. Happy dating!

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