A Valentine’s Day to Remember

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    It’s that time of year again… Valentine’s Day! But this year, skip the boring box of chocolates and opt for something more memorable and fun! Check out all our ideas here!


    Valentine’s Night at the Observatory
    The Cincinnati Observatory hosts its fifth-annual Valentine’s Night on Feb. 14. For the event, 40 couples get together for a night of star-gazing and romance.


    Cincinnati Observatory Outreach Astronomer Dean Regas says the event was inspired by the vast number of lovebirds who have enjoyed their first dates, getting engaged, or even held their wedding ceremony at the Observatory. “There’s something romantic about being under the stars in a darkened sky, so it seemed like a natural fit,” he says.


    He adds that the couples are the best part about the event. “Everyone is in a loving mood and enjoys the atmosphere,” he explains. In fact, the team at the Observatory sets up an official photo for the night on the “kissing couch” that appeared in Director Elliot Smith’s wedding picture from more than 100 years ago.


    If the skies are clear the evening of the event, Regas says couples can huddle under the domes and look through the old telescopes to catch a glimpse of Jupiter and the Moon.


    According to Regas, spots are filling up fast for this year’s event, so if you can’t get in, be sure to mark your calendar for next year. If you want to feel the romance any other time of the year, the Observatory is open year-round! To learn more about the event or the Observatory, click here.


    Cupid’s Undie Run
    Cupid’s Undie Run was started by Brendan Hanrahap as an event to help a friend with Neurofibromatosis. Chad Leather’s younger brother Drew laid in a hospital bed when Hanrahan texted Chad with the idea of starting a run with two key elements: underwear and beer. “In six weeks, they planned an event where 500+ runners showed up and raised $10,000,” says Public Relations Manager Caitlin Kizielewicz.


    Kizielewicz says Cincinnati was part of the initial national expansion aside from the original run in Washington, D.C. This will be the third-annual run held in Cincinnati.


    According to Kizielewicz, the best part of Cupid’s Undie Run is that you get to be a part of something big and get to having fun doing it. “Running in your underwear is ridiculous, and in the middle of winter is just crazy, but we’re very serious about winning the fight against this horrible disease,” she adds.


    A ticket for the evening includes a run T-shirt and the opportunity to run across the Ohio River and back in your underwear, in public, in the middle of winter. You’ll also get to help raise money for a great cause, the Children’s Tumor Foundation. Top fundraisers will receive Cupid themed underwear, a robe and a Timbuk2 messenger bag. Kizielewicz says participants can also reach VIP status and drink for free at the VIP bar for the entire event. “And participants get to party with the coolest people in Cincinnati for a few hours on a Saturday, in nothing but their bedroom best,” she laughs.


    The event has a 700-person capacity and is close to selling out. So, if you can’t get your ticket, be sure to stop by and participate as a spectator, because it will be a sight to see. Visit www.cupidsundierun.com to learn more and see if you can still snag a spot.


    Valentine’s Day Excursions with Lebanon Mason Monroe Railroad
    “Date Night” was introduced at the Lebanon Mason Monroe Railroad in 2013, through a partnership with Brazenhead in Mason. The initially took place the second Friday of each month, but became so popular that it sold out weeks in advance. All that success inspired the team to give customers an opportunity to do something truly unique on Valentine’s Day.


    Tara Hurst, Marketing Director at Lebanon Mason Monroe Railroad says this is the first year for the event and the earliest they’ve ever begun their season – which typically starts on Easter. “We hope to create a Valentine’s Day tradition for many couples and make this an exciting event for them to look forward to and enjoy every year,” she says.


    With up to 120 attendees expected for each ride, a ticket will get you a round-trip nostalgic train ride from downtown historic Lebanon to Brazenhead Irish Pub in Mason, dinner and non-alcoholic drinks at Branzenhead from an all-you-can-eat buffet, gratuity and special hotel discounts at the Baymont Inn and Suites in Mason.


    If you’d like to register or learn more about the Valentine’s Day Excursions, visit www.lebanonrr.com or call the ticket office at (513) 933-8022.


    Eat, Drink, Be Mine
    The Phoenix Chef Jeremy Luers had the idea to host a Valentine’s Day event as a way for people to see all the exciting changes at The Phoenix, taste some of his new dishes, and to see the space where a new restaurant concept will soon open in spring. He also wanted it to be a meaningful event, using the opportunity to raise funds for a good cause in the community. That’s when “Eat, Drink Be Mine” with Give Back Cincinnati was born.


    “Give Back Cincinnati is the perfect event partner because they are an active, growing charity in Greater Cincinnati and many of The Phoenix staff are young professionals, themselves,” says Luers. “It was the perfect way to introduce ourselves to the young professional community, and – more importantly – to host an exciting fundraiser that will benefit a great organization.” Luers is excited about the awareness that will arise from from the event while also supporting a great cause as they show participants a preview of what’s to come in the following months.


    Sales and Event Planner at The Phoenix, Chelsy Kokenge, says it’s a great opportunity to network and connect with a charitable organization they all support. “Our organization believes ins up porting the community that supports us, so we’re all very excited for Valentine’s Day this year,” she says, “regardless of our relationship statuses!”


    This is the first year hosting Eat, Drink, Be Mine but Luers says The Phoenix already plans to make it an annual event. The team is planning for about 150 guests with tickets available at the door. Kokenge says no one will be turned away. “We’d love to see a lot of new faces because that means even more money will be raised for Give Back Cincinnati.”


    A single ticket for the event is $30 and includes a glass of pink bubbly upon arrival and two drink tickets for the fully-stocked bar as well as heavy hors d’oeuvres prepared by Luers and tasty sweet treats from A Spoonfulla Sugar and Madisono’s Gelato. A couples ticket is $50 for the same delicious evening. DJ Toad will provide music for the event among Valentine’s-themed lighting by Goodwin Lighting Services.


    “It’s a great deal for a really fun night out,” adds Kokenge. “We’re really grateful to these businesses for graciously donating their products and services to make this event successful, especially because a portion of proceeds from the night are going straight back to Give Back Cincinnati to support their mission.”

    You can purchase tickets by clicking here or find more information about the event by visiting The Phoenix’s Facebook Page or Give Back Cincinnati’s Facebook Page.


    Wine and Food: Isn’t It Romantic…Valentine’s Day
    Jungle Jim’s International Market will host Wine and Food: Isn’t It Romantic…Valentine’s Day on February 14 from 6 to 9 p.m.


    Carol Tabone and Dave Schmerr will be on-hand to offer recipes and wine to help set the mood for a quiet evening with your darling, friends or family.


    The menu includes a number of items such as Red Bell Pepper Soup with Heart-Shaped Croutons, Roasted Veal Chop and a Roasted Winter Vegetable Tart. Features wines include Merlot, Viognier, Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah.


    The cost to participate in the event is $65 and reservations are required. For more information, call (513) 674-6059. Jungle Jim’s is located at 5440 Dixie Highway in Fairfield.