GROUNDS FOR SCULPTURE

Appreciate Art in the Great Outdoors

Bundle up and explore the nearly 300 contemporary works dotting the exquisitely landscaped 40+ acres comprising Grounds for Sculpture in Hamilton. Warm up by visiting the rotating indoor exhibits showcasing both known and emerging artists, then head to this museum/sculpture garden/arboretum’s on-site restaurant Rat’s for a delightful French repast prepared for the holiday de amore.

Take a Moonlight Stroll

Tired of long stem roses, sparkly jewelry, champagne truffles and swanky dinners? We aren’t either. But sometimes love connections are better made enjoying simpler pleasures—for example, a guided moonlit sweetheart hike through the Tenafly Nature Center’s glorious woodland preserve. After a robust walk in the woods, couples will gather ‘round the campfire and snack on melty s’mores. $30 a couple ($20 for members).

Have a Good Scare

According to psychological studies, feelings of fear also spark adrenaline and excitement. Take advantage of this phenomenon by visiting horror houses Brighton Asylum, a massive walkthrough dark attraction filled with terrifying live actors and special effects in Passaic and 13th Hour, a spooky escape room in Wharton—both offering special Valentine’s Day-themed events sure to scare up a night to remember.

STUMPY’S HATCHET HOUSE

Throw Caution to the Wind

Savor the rush of hatchet hurling at one of New Jersey’s many axe-throwing venues. If you’ve never tried it, axe throwing is easy to learn and lots of fun. Stumpy’s Hatchet House opened its first location in Eatontown in 2016 and has since expanded in NJ and across the country. Bury the Hatchet also has locations throughout NJ and beyond. Both invite visitors to picnic and BYOB for a fun night out.

Go Gaming

Recapture the sheer fun of gobbling ghosts in Pac-Man and trying not to tilt at YESTERcades, one of Jersey’s favorite retro arcades (locations in Red Bank, Somerville and Westfield). Silverball Museum in Asbury Park is perfect for kicking off the night before taking in a show at The Stone Pony. You can also hit Barcade in Newark or Jersey City for top-shelf drinks, exclusive beers, savory bar bites, more than 70 video and pinball games and best of all, it’s adults only.

Gaze at the Stars

Feast your eyes on something truly spectacular: The Planetarium at Raritan Valley Community College will host several loved-themed shows including Laser Love (love songs + lasers=awesome) on Feb. 5, 12 and 14, and Romancing the Stars, a lighthearted look at the universe through the lens of love and light, hosted just for adults on Valentine’s Day. Don’t forget that the Garden State is also has home to the largest planetarium in the western hemisphere located at Liberty Science Center in Jersey City. The Jennifer Chalsty Planetarium is currently running the Wonders of the Night Sky, a cool look at outer space from the Hubble Space Telescope and more shows nightly. If you are brave enough, tackle your fear of heights after on the Infinity Climber together.

SOJO SPA CLUB

Plan a Spa Day With a View

Where can you go to experience water-filled wonderlands where guest can soak, swim, steam, enjoy hot, cool, and salty saunas, as well as traditional full-body scrubs? If you haven’t been, Valentine’s Day is the perfect time to suss out the fuss. Get a sitter—you’ll want to spend the whole day. Along with its vast array of classic amenities, the super swanky SoJo Spa Club in Edgewater offers a decadent couples massage to get the kinks out plus magnificent rooftop views of Manhattan.

Make Dinner An Experience

If you love sushi and hibachi, plan a trip to Mt. Fuji Steakhouse in Hillburn, NY and you’ll be treated to an architectural splendor on a 45-acre mountain that’ll make you feel like you’re in Japan. Skilled master chefs will show off their artistry and comedy as they prep your meal. For another unique dinner out, head to The Madison Hotel in Morristown, where you can eat inside one of two luxurious 1890s parlor cars. Make it an overnight at The Madison Hotel and you’ll be treated to equal parts glamour and history.

Carry a Torch

A two-hour glassblowing or bead-making workshop at GlassRoots, a non-profit studio located in Newark, offers participants a hands-on opportunity to learn the basics of shaping molten materials using traditional flamework or blowing techniques. Each guest takes home a hunka burning love (their own glass creation). However, a trip to the gift shop may result in a far more beautiful souvenir, one that helps support the organization’s mission to ignite creativity and economic vitality among underserved local youth and young adults.

Heat Things Up

If the way to someone’s heart is through their stomach, a cooking class for two is surely the ultimate love lesson. Under the expert guidance of Shelley Wiseman (formerly of the The Farm Cooking School), Shelley’s Table will host a cooking class on February 13 with a Mardi Gras theme with a Chicken Liver Pate with Crostini, Shrimp & Sausage Etouffeé and of course King Cake and a Sazerac Cocktail for $250 per couple. Stay overnight at the B&B, and roll yourself into bed stuffed and sated. Other places you can take a class include Montclair Culinary Academy, Hudson Table in Hoboken, and the Cooking School at Natirar, a luxurious country estate in Peapack.

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