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Valentine's Day on A BUDGET

By Hannah Kintner
On February 7, 2013

Don't let Cupid break the bank this Valentine's Day. Be creative and remember that a romantic date doesn't have to be an expensive dinner and a $20 bouquet of roses. Consider one of these budget-friendly Valentine's ideas, or get inspired to come up with your own!


Explore Powell's City of Books together

There's always something new to discover in the world's largest new and used bookstore, located on Burnside St. in Portland. Dedicate a day to sipping lattes and exploring the stacks with your Valentine. Activities could include:

Visiting the self-help section and laughing while you read ridiculous relationship advice books together

Reading cheesy poetry to each other

Sharing your favorite books from childhood with one another


Print a special note in The Beacon

Valentine's Day cards are expensive! $5+ for a glittery piece of cardboard that thousands of other people are giving to their boyfriends and girlfriends for Valentine's Day? That doesn't make sense. Make a statement this year by printing your Valentine's message in The Beacon! Space is limited, so don't wait!

For $2, get a heart-shaped note printed in our Valentine's Day issue. On sale Feb. 7-13 in The Commons.


Get a Groupon deal

If you've never heard of, you're missing out. This website has special offers for goods and services from local businesses at a fraction of the original price. Maybe the typical dinner-and-a-movie date can be affordable after all... Look for deals on:

Romantic dinners

Flower arrangements

Fun outings like ice skating and going to the movies


Postpone your date a few days

It's no secret that planning a Valentine's date can be a bit of a hassle. All of your favorite restaurants will likely be full, so if you don't get a reservation in time, you're out of luck or you're eating at McDonald's. Make your day more enjoyable and less expensive by celebrating after Valentine's Day. Benefits include:

Less crowded restaurants

Clearance prices on heart shaped chocolates

Dirt cheap Valentine's Day cards


Have an On-Campus Date

Maybe you and your Valentine don't have the time or money to get off campus on a Thursday night. Don't worry, not all is lost! Here are few things you can do to make a date on The Bluff memorable:

Use one of the dorm kitchens to decorate cupcakes or make chocolate-covered strawberries

Dress up in your fanciest attire and have a dinner date at The Commons

Grab a hot beverage from The Commons and go for a starlit walk along The Bluff


Cook for or with your Valentine

Cooking your own meal is a sure way to save money, but a certain amount of creativity will make the night more memorable. Consider:

Pack up your homemade dinner and having a picnic in Catheral Park, along The Bluff or another place you can watch the sunset together.

Dress up for a home-cooked dinner together and then go out for dessert at a fancy restaurant, like Papa Haydn or The Melting Pot.

Make your own hors d'oeuvres and then split an entrée at an upscale restaurant.

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