Let the autumn air inspire you to take in a new activity with the person you're getting to know. Consider these five date ideas:
1. Community festivals
It seems like every neighbourhood is jumping on the "Taste of..." bandwagon these days. At community festivals you'll get to experience a new area together, enjoy the crisp autumn weather, do some people-watching and have the opportunity to try food from local restaurants without it costing a fortune. Bonus: You get your date's unfiltered responses to things like children, dogs and people who push their dogs around in strollers.
"You can really tell a lot about a person from the way they react in crowds. A scenario like this would be great for a date: Does the time in lineups with them pass quickly? Are they patient, fun-loving or, greedy with the freebie food samples?" -- Erin, 32
2. Farmer's markets
It's impossible not to be inspired by stalls full of delicious baked treats, fresh herbs and produce, and especially those perfectly crunchy fall apples. Find out each other's favourite foods just by touring around the farmer's market, and if things are going well you're armed with all the info you need to impress with that meal you're going to cook on your next date.
"I consider myself a ‘foodie,' so I could go on all day about pesticides, choosing organic and how important it is to eat locally. Taking a date to the market lets me get a sense of their values and if they're compatible with mine." -- Gavin, 35
Page 1 of 2 -- Visit a local fair or flea market, and why not take in an outdoor game of football too? Find these great date ideas on page 2
Local fairs are a great place to take someone you don't know very well because they invoke so much nostalgia and are rife with great conversation starters.
First tastes of cotton candy, first time on a ferris wheel and the first time you ever won a stuffed animal by playing Skeeball are all possible topics that will get you to open up and share with your date, and vice versa. There are also opportunities to impress with your Whack-a-Mole skills, and unavoidable full-body contact in the Tilt-a-Whirl.
"This is a good first date because there is so much going on that it would take the pressure off any awkward silent moments, plus who doesn't like games and junk food?" -- Sarah, 30
4. Outdoor spectator sports
Whether it's college football or high school soccer, there's something magical about an outdoor stadium that truly embodies the spirit of fall -- getting out the bright-coloured knitted scarves, huddling under a shared blanket in the bleachers, sipping cider from a Thermos, and not really caring about the outcome.
Conversation will flow naturally as you discuss the intricacies of the game, learn and chant the team cheers together, and enjoy delicious stadium hotdogs.
"If my date just wanted to focus on the game the entire time, I'd be bored. But if they were OK with chatting the whole way through about various things, then I'd definitely enjoy it." -- Frankie, 35
5. Flea markets
Handmade crafts, historical artifacts and strange collections are get-to-know-you gold. You never even have to set foot in you date's apartment to discover that the object of your affection has an extensive assortment of antique books or original Nintendo games, both of which can be found for sale here. It's also an excellent opportunity to show off your haggling skills and do your best Canadian Pickers impression.
"I like this idea because there's so much opportunity for joking around when you're looking at odd junk. You would find out right away if you and your date had a similar sense of humour." -- Wesley, 33
The fall is a great time to change up your dating routine and try something new. So if you want to get to know someone new, or even want to spend quality time with a long-term beau, consider an unexpected location for your next fall date.
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