On Valentine’s Day, dinner and a movie are nice.
But maybe you want to impress your date with something else.
Whether you’ve just met someone special or have been with your partner for years, venues large and small in our suburbs offer romantic activities for couples in the mood for something different.
How about taking classes to learn more about wine, or how to cook? Or getting creative at a romantic paint night? Or maybe you’d like to recreate that memorable scene in the movie “Ghost,” starring you, your loved one, and a pottery wheel?
The Boston Wine School offers a chance to learn about wine and chocolate pairings in a relaxed setting, with no fear of asking a dumb question.
“The wine school is 100 percent guaranteed snob-free zone,” said Jonathon Alsop, its founder and executive director, adding he aims to teach people about themselves and what types of wine they like.
The school is offering a wine and chocolate workshop from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Feb. 12 at VINOvations in Sharon, and will explore pairings such as Fili Prosecco and Valrhona dark chocolate pearls and Pedroncelli Petite Sirah and Taza “Guajillo Chili” dark chocolate. Tickets are $69 per person and are available at www.bostonwineschool.com.
For a post-Valentine’s Day outing, the wine school is offering classes on Italian wines in Sharon and a beginner’s wine class in Ipswich, as well as gift certificates.
The Stevens-Coolidge Place in North Andover offers a lovely setting for you and your partner to paint together, whether you don’t know how to paint or have been doing it for years.
This isn’t a typical paint night, where class participants paint whatever is on a finished canvas. In the second-floor ballroom of this Colonial Revival home, two trained instructors will guide painters as they draw inspiration from clustered still life, such as fresh flowers and other objects.
“If you have experience already, it won’t be beneath you,” said Kate Bibeau, engagement site manager at The Stevens-Coolidge Place. But, Bibeau said, you don’t have to know how to paint in order to attend.
The site hosts painting in the garden workshops in the warmer months, but this is the first year for the Valentine’s Day program. Admission per person for the event, from 6 to 8 p.m. on Feb. 14, is $40 for Trustees members and $50 for others. Registration is required and is available at www.thetrustees.org. Materials, drinks, and dessert are included.
At the deCordova Sculpture Park and Museum in Lincoln, couples can get artistic together while trying their hand at pottery. “Date Night with Clay,” from 6 to 8 p.m. on Feb. 14, is $90 per couple, or $80 for members. Registration is taken at www.decordova.org.
The popular program began five years ago and gives participants time on the pottery wheel, allowing couples to tap into their inner Demi Moore and Patrick Swayze.
“It’s definitely a break from the routine of flowers and dinner,” said Bruce Barry, deCordova’s ceramics sculpture program manager and resident artist.
Each person makes half of a heart, then the halves are put together, said Barry, who teaches the class. The hearts are inspired by Jim Dine’s sculpture “Two Big Black Hearts,” part of deCordova’s permanent collection.
Prior experience in ceramics is not required.
If you and your date want to learn more about romantic food, chef and cookbook author Didi Emmons is teaching “Aphrodisiac Alert” from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. on Feb. 14 at Powisset Farm in Dover.
Participants will cook in the barn’s commercial kitchen, enjoy champagne and other wine, and dine on their creations in a cozy winter setting.
Emmons brings her strong background in preparing vegetable-focused meals and applies it to a menu that includes foods thought to be aphrodisiacs.
“People can expect a fun evening, not only a cooking class but a fun dinner,” said Nicole Nacamuli, engagement site manager at Powisset Farm.
The class and dinner are $72 per person for Trustees members, $90 for nonmembers. Registration can be made at www.thetrustees.org.
If you’re in the mood for music, concerts with a Valentine’s Day theme are offered in, among other venues, Beverly, Duxbury, and Hingham.
Juanito Pascual New Flamenco Trio and flamenco dancer Nelida Tirado perform at 8 p.m. Feb. 14 at The Cabot in Beverly. The band combines flamenco with jazz and world music with a performance geared toward Valentine’s Day.
Tickets are $22.50 to $32.50, and are available at www.thecabot.org.
The South Shore Conservatory is presenting two performances of “All You Need is Love: Music of the Beatles.” Conservatory faculty members will perform Beatles music in free, one-hour concerts at 4 p.m. on Feb. 11 at One Conservatory Drive in Hingham and at 4 p.m. on Feb. 18 at 64 St. George St., Duxbury. More information is available at www.sscmusic.org.
Attendees are invited to a reception after each performance and an opportunity to meet the performers.Jill Terreri Ramos can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow her on Twitter @jillterreri.