Valentine’s Day is probably one of the more controversial holidays on the U.S. calendar. While some people are all-in for the holiday that celebrates love and affection, others see it as a commercial scheme for retailers to make an extra buck or two after the Christmas season.
Whatever your thoughts are on the holiday, doing something small like picking up a funny card, leaving an endearing note in your sweetie’s lunchbox or just taking a walk together around the neighborhood could brighten their day.
With 2020 and the beginning of 2021 being so challenging, taking the time to spread a little extra love and kindness is something we could all use right now.
The Greeley Tribune compiled a list of fun gifts and activities to celebrate the holiday with your partner, family, friends and even if you are solo.
Gift ideas for the entire family
Swing over to Jerri J’s Bakery at 802 9th St. to pick up some sweets for your sweet. The bakery sells a variety of flavors of cupcakes such as champagne, PBandJ and s’mores as well as classic flavors like chocolate and vanilla. Classic flavors are $2 each while gourmet flavors run $3 per cupcake. Place your order ahead of time to ensure availability. For more information, go to www.greeleybakery.com.
The Our Adventure Book from T-Haohua gives you the opportunity to create your own scrapbook of trips and journeys with your partner, family and friends. The scrapbook is modeled after the one in Disney’s “Up” movie and contains plenty of empty pages for you to fill with photos and keepsakes. The book is available for $15.99 on Amazon. For more information, go to https://amzn.to/2NhWvaD.
Swing over to 477 Distilling, 825 9th St., Unit B, to pick up a bottle of your loved ones favorite spirit or get them something new to try. The locally owned distillery sells a variety of craft spirits including bourbon, gin, vodka and the more exotic Chai Spirit and Peanut Barrel. Not only will you be getting a gift they love, you’ll be supporting a small business. For more information, go to www.477distilling.com.
Want to make your gift last the entire year? Then the Date Night Jar is right up your alley. The jar contains 52 sticks each with a fun date night idea for you and your partner. Choose from four different date night collections and seven personalized lids to make the perfect gift. Jars are $40 and can be purchased on Etsy at http://etsy.me/2XReSVQ. You can also make your own jar with supplies from Hobby Lobby or Michaels!
The “What I Love About You” fill in the blank book is a cute and personal gift for both men and women. The book is filled with prompts that authors can make as sweet or sexy as they want. The book retails for $4.99 on Amazon. For more information, go to https://amzn.to/38Wbm2N.
Not sure what to get your wife, girlfriend or crush for Valentine’s Day? The folks at Warm Hugs Mixes and Gift Boutique, 809 10th St., can help. The store features a variety of different gifts and trinkets perfect for the gardener, baker or fashionista in the family. The store sells gift certificates as well. For more information, go to www.warmhugsmixes.com.
Instead of buying fresh-cut flowers for your sweetie get them something that will last with the Mason Jar Indoor Flower Garden. The kit comes with a reusable lavender jar equipped with a hydroponic “wicking” system that brings water up to the roots, alleviating over or under watering. Choose from chamomile or pansy seeds. The kits are $20 each and can be purchased at https://bit.ly/3iroRuE.
Gather the family together for an evening of crafting with the Modern Valentine’s Craft Kit. The kit includes different colored construction paper, felt hearts, colored popsicle sticks, stickers, jewels and more for creating unique and personal valentines. The kit is $16.99 and geared toward kids age 6 years and older. For more information, or to purchase the kit, go to https://amzn.to/3qu6JD2.
Make Valentine’s Day the best for the beer lover in your family with some craft brews from local breweries such as WeldWerks, Brix Brew and Tap, Wiley Roots, Broken Plow Brewery and others. Gather a variety of beer and add some unique glasses for a fun gift basket.
Turn Valentine’s Day an artistic night with the Date Night Box Valentine’s Day Edition. The box contains a buffalo plaid throw blanket, two wine glasses, two blank wooden signs, white candles, paint brushes, acrylic paint colors and an instruction postcard that explains how to access a video tutorial for the painting project. This is a great gift to take along with you for an afternoon picnic or for sitting in front of the fireplace at home. The box is $45.99 and can be purchased on Etsy at http://etsy.me/3syemKu.
KindNotes Glass Keepsake Gift Jar is a great way to send loving thoughts and messages of hope to friends and family members of all ages. The themed jars contain 31 blank notes with matching envelopes and coordinating filling. Notes can be read all at once or over time. Jars come in a die-cut window gift box accented with silver foil. KindNotes Glass Keepsake Gift Jars are $44.95 each and can be found at http://amzn.to/3inx82B.
Make the most out of family time by reading little ones “Happy Valentine’s Day, Mouse!” by Laura Numeroff. The book introduces youngsters to the holiday as they follow Mouse as he makes valentines for all of his friends. The book is available in paperback for $8.86 or sturdy board pages for $7.08. For more information, or to purchase the book, go to https://amzn.to/3qzX5P4.
Valentine’s Day inspired activities
Head to Estes Park for a day of fresh mountain air and majestic sights. Tour the town or head over to the Rocky Mountain National Park for some exploring. Pack a picnic basket or enjoy a meal at one of the town’s many restaurants and eateries. Make it a weekend by booking a room at a hotel or renting a cabin. For more information on Estes Park, go to www.visitestespark.com.
Get your love on for the outdoors along the Poudre River Trail Corridor. Pack a lunch, fill up some water bottles, grab the camera, lace up your shoes and enjoy a Valentine’s Day hike on the trail. The trail is suitable for all ages and skill levels. There are several trailhead locations in Greeley. For more information, go to http://bit.ly/39Ep2P4.
Known as the Sweetheart City, Loveland goes all out for the holiday with the annual Sweetheart Festival. This year the event will feature the Something RED art installation, a community mural project, Sweetheart Classic 4-mile run/walk and festive lights displayed throughout the Chapungu Sculpture Park. For more information, go to www.downtownloveland.org.
Take a romantic walk around the lake at Boardwalk Park, 100 N. 5th St. Windsor, and enjoy the sunset. After head over to downtown Windsor for dinner at the Windsor Mill Tavern, 301 Main St., Unit C, Lonesome Buck Smokehouse and Taproom, 1294 Main St., or any of the other downtown restaurants.
Really kick up the romance by booking a horse-drawn carriage ride in downtown Denver. Irish Rose Drafts offers 20 different tours of downtown that range from 15 to 90 minutes. Riders are picked up and dropped off in front of Gusto at the 16th Street Mall and Lawrence. For more information, go to www.irishrosedrafts.com.
Spend Valentine’s Day with your true love — your dog. The Puppy Love: A Date with Your Dog begins at 10 a.m. on Saturday, Feb. 13 at Freedom’s Edge Brewing Company, 1509 Pioneer Ave., Cheyenne. The event will feature crafts for you and Fido, a photo booth, snacks and beer. Tickets are $20 per person and include a pint of beer. Proceeds from the event will help support the Cheyenne Animal Shelter. For more information, go to http://bit.ly/3bWLmX7.
Take the family out for a day of railfanning at the Colorado Model Railroad Museum, 680 10th St. The museum is open from 1 to 4 p.m. on Valentine’s Day and features an amazing collection of trains and props. Timed tickets must be purchased online and admission is $10 for adults age 13 and older, $8 for seniors age 65 years and older, $5 for children ages 3 to 12 years and children age 3 and under are free. For more information go to www.cmrm.org.