It’s almost Valentine’s Day, or as some like to refer to it, Singles Awareness Day. It’s easy to find traditional, romantic things to do for the couples holiday in NYC, so we rounded up a few quirkier, off-the-beaten-path options instead. For those looking for a Valentine’s Day theme, there’s an irreverent, relationship-themed comedy show or a charity run you do in your underpants. Totally unromantic options include an Israel/Palestine photography exhibit and your last chance to catch Stephen King’s thriller Misery on stage. For those seeking a romantic getaway, escape the cynical city in favor of lovely Warwick, New York, where you can wine and dine the one you love.
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February 12 | Romantic comedy
Sure, you can go to an intimate, romantic dinner on Valentine’s Day. Or, you can kick off the weekend with a funny, irreverent show that features a mix of comedic stories about love and actual relationship advice from real-life therapists. It’s a little like getting an illicit peek at someone else’s therapy session, peppered with funny anecdotes to keep things light. Hosted by comedians Lynn Bixenspan and Morgan Pielli, the show also features talents like Caitlin Brodnick, Myq Kaplan, and Marc Gerber.
9:30 p.m. | QED: A Place for Show and Tell, 27-16 23rd Ave., Queens | $10 | website
February 12–June 5 | Photography exhibit
The new photography exhibit opening this week at the Brooklyn Museum, This Place, aims to add nuance and humanity to the complex conflict between Israel and Palestine. Featuring over 600 photographs from 12 artists taken between 2009 and 2012 in Israel and the West Bank, the show paints a portrait not just of war, but also of families, individuals, and natural beauty. The multiple viewpoints presented create a rich tapestry, and show that—unlike some of the photographs—the issues in the region are not simply black and white. Even if you don’t have an interest in Middle East politics, the photos stand on their own.
Times vary | 200 Eastern Pkwy, Brooklyn | (718) 638-5000 | $16 suggested donation | website
February 13 | Charity run
Cupid’s Undie Run
If you think people aren’t crazy enough to run a mile in their undies in the middle of February, think again! Last year Cupid’s Undie Run raised over $3.5 million dollars to support The Children’s Tumor Foundation, thanks to its enthusiastic participants. Run on your own or in a team, wear underwear, a bathrobe, or a hilarious outfit of your choice (typical running gear allowed, if you must). There are fundraising prizes to help motivate you to get more backers, including special undies, or course (or, even better, free access to the open bar—this is more party than run, after all).
12 p.m.–4 p.m. | Stage 48, 605 W. 48th St., New York | $55 | website
February 13-15 | Escape the city
For those seeking a romantic getaway this weekend, head to Warwick, New York, a town just on the border of New Jersey and 90 minutes from the city. The Appalachian Trail is nearby, as is great skiing and other winter sports. Make a stop at the Warwick Valley Winery and Distillery, which offers daily tours and tastings of their wines, gin, ciders, and liqueurs. In town, Noble Pies is famous for their sweet and savory pies just like grandma used to make. Enjoy dinner at the intimate Iron Forge Inn, which was built in 1760 on the site of a historic forge. The restaurant, helmed by CIA-trained chef-owner Erik Johansen, is offering special, romantic tasting menus and wine pairings for the holiday. There are a number of sweet bed and breakfasts in the area, but the best is the cozy Peach Tree Inn. Spring for the romantic getaway package, which includes a room with a fireplace, private patio, and double whirlpool tub, plus an in-room couples massage and breakfast in bed.
February 14 | Show closing
Looking for an anti-Valentine’s Day activity? Stephen King’s haunting story of a writer held captive by his “number one fan” as she nurses him back to health after a car accident is anything but romantic. Bruce Willis has received rave reviews for his Broadway debut alongside the equally talented Laurie Metcalf. The show ends this week after a limited engagement, 14-week run, so it’s your last chance to catch this gripping performance. For those under 25 who like to wing it, the box office offers a limited number of $35 student tickets when it opens for that day's performance. (Show up early to beat the line.)
Times vary | Broadhurst Theatre, 235 W. 44th St., New York | From $35 | website
A native New Yorker, Katherine is a freelance food and travel writer who has eaten her way across the globe and is always on the lookout for her next great meal. She is an avid reader, insatiable traveler, sometimes photographer, and mom to an inquisitive toddler.