November 02, 2018

30 Date Ideas Under $30 For the Fiscally Responsible Romantic Cincinnatian

According to the great Jennifer Lopez, “love don’t cost a thing,” but a romantic evening out on the town can get expensive if you don’t plan accordingly. Be it a scenic stroll through the park, or a pint at a craft brewery, there’s no need to skimp on date night in Cincinnati if you follow CityBeat’s guide to the best spots that won’t break the bank.
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Partake in Some Friendly Competition at Arcade Legacy: Bar Edition
Free to play as long as you buy something to eat or drink
Arcade Legacy: Bar Edition is a gamer's paradise, whether you’re into vintage arcade and pinball machines or Sega Genesis. And even if you aren’t, the glowing screens and gentle ping of the machines is a perfect backdrop for a playful date night — especially if you and your beau go head to head in a digital battle to the death. Mondays are Fight Nights for serious players, and the bar hosts monthly pinball tournaments if you want to go analog. In addition to games, the bar serves craft beer, cocktails, nachos and crazy hot dog creations (even vegetarian ones). 3929 Spring Grove Ave., Northside
Photo: Hailey Bollinger

Partake in Some Friendly Competition at Arcade Legacy: Bar Edition

Free to play as long as you buy something to eat or drink
Arcade Legacy: Bar Edition is a gamer's paradise, whether you’re into vintage arcade and pinball machines or Sega Genesis. And even if you aren’t, the glowing screens and gentle ping of the machines is a perfect backdrop for a playful date night — especially if you and your beau go head to head in a digital battle to the death. Mondays are Fight Nights for serious players, and the bar hosts monthly pinball tournaments if you want to go analog. In addition to games, the bar serves craft beer, cocktails, nachos and crazy hot dog creations (even vegetarian ones). 3929 Spring Grove Ave., Northside
Photo: Hailey Bollinger
Visit Everybody’s Treehouse and Walk the Trails of Mt. Airy Forest
Free admission
Everybody’s Treehouse is an otherworldly, elevated structure buried in trees and seemingly snatched out of a fantasy novel. The structure is also fully wheelchair-accessible. 1212 Trail Ridge Road, Westwood
Photo: Hailey Bollinger

Visit Everybody’s Treehouse and Walk the Trails of Mt. Airy Forest

Free admission
Everybody’s Treehouse is an otherworldly, elevated structure buried in trees and seemingly snatched out of a fantasy novel. The structure is also fully wheelchair-accessible. 1212 Trail Ridge Road, Westwood
Photo: Hailey Bollinger
Root on the Cincinnati Cyclones During Dollar Beer Night
Game tickets start at $15
The Cincinnati Cyclones hockey team is known for its fun promotional nights, including regular $1 beer nights where you can get Miller High Life or Pabst Blue Ribbon for a buck each. U.S. Bank Arena, 100 Broadway, Downtown
Photo: Jesse Fox

Root on the Cincinnati Cyclones During Dollar Beer Night

Game tickets start at $15
The Cincinnati Cyclones hockey team is known for its fun promotional nights, including regular $1 beer nights where you can get Miller High Life or Pabst Blue Ribbon for a buck each. U.S. Bank Arena, 100 Broadway, Downtown
Photo: Jesse Fox
Dine on Cheap Oysters at Eighth & English
$1 per oyster
If you’re looking for something a little libidinous for date night, head to O’Bryonville’s seafood hot spot Eighth & English — especially on a Tuesday or Friday and Saturday night. From 5 p.m.-close on Tuesdays and 8 p.m.-close at the bar on Friday and Saturday, the restaurant offers a selection of $1 oysters with associated accoutrement. If you want to go beefy, the fish takes a backseat on Thursdays for $15 Burger & Beaujolais night. 2038 Madison Road, O’Bryonville
Photo: Hailey Bollinger

Dine on Cheap Oysters at Eighth & English

$1 per oyster
If you’re looking for something a little libidinous for date night, head to O’Bryonville’s seafood hot spot Eighth & English — especially on a Tuesday or Friday and Saturday night. From 5 p.m.-close on Tuesdays and 8 p.m.-close at the bar on Friday and Saturday, the restaurant offers a selection of $1 oysters with associated accoutrement. If you want to go beefy, the fish takes a backseat on Thursdays for $15 Burger & Beaujolais night. 2038 Madison Road, O’Bryonville
Photo: Hailey Bollinger
Take a Romantic Walk Along the River at Smale Riverfront Park and Ride Carol Ann’s Carousel
$2 per person per ride
Carol Ann’s glass-enclosed, year-round carousel is open 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Wednesday-Sunday and features 44 whimsical Cincinnati-centric creatures for you to ride. If your walk and ride works up a thirst, nearby Taste of Belgium at The Banks offers 58 beers on tap — including rare Belgian brews. West Mehring Way, Downtown
Photo: Jesse Fox

Take a Romantic Walk Along the River at Smale Riverfront Park and Ride Carol Ann’s Carousel

$2 per person per ride
Carol Ann’s glass-enclosed, year-round carousel is open 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Wednesday-Sunday and features 44 whimsical Cincinnati-centric creatures for you to ride. If your walk and ride works up a thirst, nearby Taste of Belgium at The Banks offers 58 beers on tap — including rare Belgian brews. West Mehring Way, Downtown
Photo: Jesse Fox
Sip, Bite and Stroll Through Findlay Market
Free to wander
While Findlay Market is free to wander, they do offer a free 30-minute guided tour bi-monthly to introduce you to special market vendors and recount tales of the market’s 160 year history. Grab a bite to eat — or groceries to make dinner later — and stop by Market Wines 11 a.m.-3 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday for the famous wine tasting. For $7 each, you can get hefty samples of four handpicked wines. 1801 Race St., Over-the-Rhine
Photo: Hailey Bollinger

Sip, Bite and Stroll Through Findlay Market

Free to wander
While Findlay Market is free to wander, they do offer a free 30-minute guided tour bi-monthly to introduce you to special market vendors and recount tales of the market’s 160 year history. Grab a bite to eat — or groceries to make dinner later — and stop by Market Wines 11 a.m.-3 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday for the famous wine tasting. For $7 each, you can get hefty samples of four handpicked wines. 1801 Race St., Over-the-Rhine
Photo: Hailey Bollinger
Take a Tour Through the American Sign Museum
$15 per person
Get lost in the ads and landmarks of yesteryear. Winding pathways of colorful signage give way to a mocked-up Main Street, with faux storefronts, cobblestone paths and giant logos from Howard Johnson, McDonald’s and Marshall Field’s. From roadside nostalgia and a looming Big Boy to pharmacy signs and gas station markers, the flashing lights, buzzing electricity and rotating wonders are almost a sensory overload. Almost. Guided and self-guided tours available. 1330 Monmouth Ave., Camp Washington
Photo: Hailey Bollinger

Take a Tour Through the American Sign Museum

$15 per person
Get lost in the ads and landmarks of yesteryear. Winding pathways of colorful signage give way to a mocked-up Main Street, with faux storefronts, cobblestone paths and giant logos from Howard Johnson, McDonald’s and Marshall Field’s. From roadside nostalgia and a looming Big Boy to pharmacy signs and gas station markers, the flashing lights, buzzing electricity and rotating wonders are almost a sensory overload. Almost. Guided and self-guided tours available. 1330 Monmouth Ave., Camp Washington
Photo: Hailey Bollinger
Stuff Your Face with Cheese at The Rhined’s Raclette Night
$10 per order
The Rhined is a little slice of cheese heaven located across from Findlay Market. The artisan shop stocks a collection of the best hand-selected domestic cheeses, plus wine, beer, nuts, olives and jams to accompany the dairy of your dreams. On top of their excellent selection of cheese, which you can grab to go by weight or eat inside on a curated cheese board, they also offer a specialty sandwich of the week, adult "lunchables" and their Raclette Night, where on Wednesday nights starting at 5 p.m., they heat and scrape raclette cheese (a type of Swiss) onto a selection of goodies like potatoes, veggies and charcuterie. 1737 Elm St., Over-the-Rhine 
Photo: Hailey Bollinger

Stuff Your Face with Cheese at The Rhined’s Raclette Night

$10 per order
The Rhined is a little slice of cheese heaven located across from Findlay Market. The artisan shop stocks a collection of the best hand-selected domestic cheeses, plus wine, beer, nuts, olives and jams to accompany the dairy of your dreams. On top of their excellent selection of cheese, which you can grab to go by weight or eat inside on a curated cheese board, they also offer a specialty sandwich of the week, adult "lunchables" and their Raclette Night, where on Wednesday nights starting at 5 p.m., they heat and scrape raclette cheese (a type of Swiss) onto a selection of goodies like potatoes, veggies and charcuterie. 1737 Elm St., Over-the-Rhine
Photo: Hailey Bollinger
Go on a Self-Guided ArtWorks Mural Tour 
Free
Each summer, ArtWorks and its apprentices put new murals up on buildings around the Greater Cincinnati area. Download a PDF of downtown and Over-the-Rhine murals at artworkscincinnati.org. 20 E. Central Parkway, Downtown
Photo: Hailey Bollinger

Go on a Self-Guided ArtWorks Mural Tour

Free
Each summer, ArtWorks and its apprentices put new murals up on buildings around the Greater Cincinnati area. Download a PDF of downtown and Over-the-Rhine murals at artworkscincinnati.org. 20 E. Central Parkway, Downtown
Photo: Hailey Bollinger
Talk a Walk Through the Jungle at the Krohn Conservatory
$7 per person
Located in historic Eden Park, the Krohn Conservatory is an aluminum-and-glass Art Deco destination (in the shape of an upside-down heart) filled with more than 3,500 plant species from around the world. Permanent displays include a rare orchid house, steamy tropical room, succulent-filled desert space and a fun walk-through rainforest rock waterfall. 1501 Eden Park Drive, Mount Adams
Photo: Kellie Coleman

Talk a Walk Through the Jungle at the Krohn Conservatory

$7 per person
Located in historic Eden Park, the Krohn Conservatory is an aluminum-and-glass Art Deco destination (in the shape of an upside-down heart) filled with more than 3,500 plant species from around the world. Permanent displays include a rare orchid house, steamy tropical room, succulent-filled desert space and a fun walk-through rainforest rock waterfall. 1501 Eden Park Drive, Mount Adams
Photo: Kellie Coleman