Does it get any better? Last month’s Date Night Adventures pretty much topped the charts! I mean, a surprise proposal AND Johnnyswim! But yes. It does get better! This month we are mixing it up and we have some fun in store for all of you adventurous date nighters. Get prepared for some awesome local events that you will want to check out, plus some stay-at-home adventures as well. The cherry on top – we have a free Date Night Calendar printout for you to download the end of this post!

Ready? Let’s get into it!

1. Laser Tag – Did you know there was a Laser Tag in Lake Charles? The USS Orleck Naval Museum is hosting this laser tag event once a week throughout July. The calendar hasn’t been set yet on their website yet, but I think this is something fun to keep in mind when you are planning your date night this month! They do have public (open) play listed on their site on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 5 pm – 8 pm, prices for that listed below.

When – Tuesdays and Thursdays 5:00 pm – 8:00 pm
Where – USS Orleck Naval Museum – 604 N. Enterprise Blvd. Lake Charles, LA 70601
Cost – $7 for a 12 minute game, $20 for 3 games, and $25 for 4 games
Other info – Must wear closed toe shoes, parties are subject to cancellation due to severe weather, and you must sign a waiver.

2. Red, White, Blue and You! – If you are feeling a little festive and would like to get out and celebrate Independence Day this July 4th, we recommend checking out this free annual event! The schedule for the evening is as follows:
6:00 pm – Street Parade Downtown Ryan Street
6:30 pm – Bluegrass Music by Market Blue (Civic Center Outdoor Amphitheatre)
8:00 pm – Lake Charles Community Band with the Louisiana Choral Foundation & Friends: Salute to Armed Forces (Civic Center Outdoor Amphitheatre)
9:15 pm – Fireworks Over The Lake

When – Saturday, July 4
Time – Fun starts at 6:00 pm
Where – Downtown Lake Charles
Other info – Food booths will be available on site and event t-shirts will be for sale for $5. Anyone interested in joining in the parade please contact Denise Fasske at 337-491-9159.

3. LC Symphony & First Federal Bank of Louisiana present: Cirque de la Symphonie – Cirque de la Symphonie is a new production formed to bring the magic of cirque (like the circus but better) to the music hall. Artists include aerial flyers, acrobats, contortionists, dancers, jugglers, balancers, and strongmen. Each artist’s performance is professionally choreographed to classical masterpieces and popular contemporary music in collaboration with the maestro and a live symphony orchestra. This sounds like so much fun! They have tables available where you and a group can enjoy the show together, with options for dinner included. Mr. Gatti’s pizza is also available for $10 for medium pepperoni or medium vegetarian – but this must be pre-ordered from their site.

When – Saturday, July 11
Time – 11:00 am  – 7:00 pm
Where – Lake Charles Civic Center (Sports Facility) – 900 LakeShore Dr. LC, LA 70601
Cost – Riser seats are $25 for adults, $15 for students and 6 years and under are free, individual reserved table seats on floor are $50 and a reserved table of 8 is $400. Premium seating is also available starting at tables of 8 at $1,000 and this includes food, drinks and adult beverages.

That’s all the local events we are highlighting this month, but you can find more Lake Area events by visiting the City of Lake Charles Tourist Bureau website!

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Okay, I am excited to mix things up a bit this month and introduce one of my new favorite books, 52 Uncommon Dates by Randy Southern. I have mentioned before that my hubby and I have a default date – dinner and a movie. There is nothing wrong with dinner and a movie (we always have a great time), but there isn’t ever really much thought behind it. So I was so excited to stumble across this little book that is packed with creative date night ideas! In fact, there are enough ideas in here for you to have a date night every week for a whole year!

There are three main things I absolutely LOVE about this book:
1. The dates are out of the box! They make you get out there and do something new, fun, or different.
2. Each date has a few pages of steps to walk you through planning and executing. The book gives you a good idea of what to expect on the date, as well as information on how to execute the date and best promote quality time together. It wraps up with 2 or 3 questions to discuss and reflect on your date.
3. It helps you focus on growing closer to the Lord first, and in the process growing closer together as a couple. Each date has a section called “Take It To God” where you read the Word and pray together before your date. There are also a list of scriptures you can look up and read together as well.

I’ve selected two date night suggestions from the 52 Uncommon Dates book for you to check out this month. We already have The Culinary Date penciled in on our date night calendar!

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The Culinary Date
If you are both foodies, you likely won’t need much prompting to give the Culinary Date a shot. If, however, one of you is a stranger to the kitchen, you may be a little reluctant. In that case, whoever is more experienced may need to serve  as a mentor of sorts to the other. As long as that mentoring is given and received with a good attitude, you shouldn’t have a problem. You’ll find that cooking together involves no small amount of cooperation and teamwork. The Culinary Date should give you a pretty good idea of how well the two of you work together. (“Set The Scene” excerpt from 52 Uncommon Dates by Randy Southern, pg. 113)

Before your Culinary Date, spend some time in prayer together. Thank God for the abundance of His blessings. Thank Him for supplying your needs every day and ask Him to help you maintain a spirit of gratitude for what you’ve been given, ask Him to bless and watch over those who don’t know where their next meal is coming from, and that He bless your efforts to work as a team – during the Culinary Date and beyond. (“Take It To God” excerpt from 52 Uncommon Dates by Randy Southern, pg. 116)

You can take your Culinary Date in one of a couple different directions. The first option is to prepare and enjoy a meal together. Obviously, the meal should require a little more effort than opening a jar of tomato sauce and a box of angel hair pasta. Beyond that, though, you can decide how complicated or time intensive you want your meal preparation to be. After you’ve decided on a menu lineup – appetizers, main dish, side dishes, and dessert – come up with a plan of attack. Here are a few things to keep in mind:
1. Do the shopping together – there are no solo ventures where this meal is concerned. Every step along the way should be taken together.

2. Work as a team until the job is done. This is not a place for the more kitchen-savvy of the two of you to do all the substantial work while the other person is relegated to table-setting duty.

3. Do the cleanup work together. Remember, the date doesn’t end when the food is consumed. Cleanup time is a great time for conversation. If you are married, how would your household change if you started doing daily tasks together? Other questions you can discuss might be: What qualities did God see in us when He decided that we would make a good team? What are some of the challenges we face when it comes to working together?

Option two is to enroll in a one-day cooking class together.  The Get Your Kitchen in Shape healthier cooking class hosted by the Nutrition and Food Science Program at McNeese State University is offering two classes this month (July 11 and 18 from 5:30-8:30 pm). You can find out more here.
(“Make It Happen” excerpt from 52 Uncommon Dates by Randy Southern, pg. 114-115)

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The Jigsaw Puzzle Date – The words Jigsaw Puzzle Date by themselves may not conjure up visions of romance and excitement. But when you add words like “next to a warm fireplace” or “with your favorite romantic music playing in the background,” the possibilities become a little clearer. Piecing together a jigsaw puzzle lends itself both to engaging conversations and comfortable silences. If you come prepared with a few discussion-starter ideas, you may be surprised where your conversation takes you. (“Set The Scene” excerpt from 52 Uncommon Dates by Randy Southern, pg. 93-94)

Before your Jigsaw Puzzle Date, spend some time in prayer together. Married couples can thank God for combining the individual pieces of your two lives and joining them together to create a unified whole. Ask the Lord to help you come up with some memorably effective discussion starters; to guide your conversation so you’ll be able to learn more about each other; to work as a team toward a common goal: completing the puzzle. (“Take It To God” excerpt from 52 Uncommon Dates by Randy Southern, pg. 96)

The more effort you put into your Jigsaw Puzzle Date, the more you and your significant other will get out of it. Here are a few tips to consider:
1. Create a great atmosphere. Clear off a table at the house with plenty of room for your puzzle, get some fresh flowers or candles, get some yummy snacks and romantic music.  Make it an experience that you won’t want to forget.

2. Learn from each other as you work together. Do you have differing methods for working puzzles? If so, talk about them. Does your puzzle-working style reveal something about you – say, that you have a strong preference for organization and orderliness? Talk about that, too. See how much you can learn about each other before the puzzle is done.

3. Be prepared to keep the conversation flowing. Before the date, brainstorm a few topics or questions you can use as needed to guide your conversation. For example, you might ask, “Was there ever a time when you felt that your life was in pieces – and that you couldn’t see the big picture to put things back together again?” Be prepared with your own example to break the ice. If you need to use note cards as prompts, don’t be embarrassed, your date will be flattered that you put such effort into the evening.

4. Don’t let the puzzle get in the way of a good evening. There’s no dating law that says you have to finish the puzzle. (“Make It Happen” excerpt from 52 Uncommon Dates by Randy Southern, pg. 94-95)

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We want to hear all about your Date Night Adventures! Tag us on Instagram @louisianawedding while you are out on your Date Night Adventure. Did you, or do you plan on, adding one of these Date Night Adventures to your calendar this month? Leave a comment below and tell us what you think!

 

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