8 Anti-V-Day Activities Everyone Can Enjoy

While February 14 tends to bring out the warm fuzzies in those with a better half, it can also form a nasty little black cloud over those who have yet to find true love. And, just between us: It's totally okay to feel a twinge of envy when your coworkers receive flowers and chocolates while you get…lunch. This year, instead of feeling sorry for yourself over a pint of Häagen-Dazs, get out of the house and have a little fun at one of these anti-Valentine's Day to-dos — no date required.
We’ve gone ahead and done the ground work for you by rounding up eight awesome happenings around Chicago. You can learn how to make your own bling at String A Strand in Lincoln Square or celebrate the best rom-coms ever at a John Hughes V-Day tribute. You'll have plenty of options when it comes to painting the town red — even if you're feeling a little blue. So, go on — put down that spoon and turn off the television. You’ve got a hot date with the city.
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Photo: Courtesy of Epic.
Epic’s Cupid Who?
Epic restaurant teams up with XLNT events to bring you a single's style Valentine’s dinner mixer of, well, epic, proportions entitled Cupid Who? For $60 a person, you get a three-course meal, complete with drink pairings — tax and gratuity included. But, there’s a twist: Each course will be conducted like a Chinese fire drill, introducing you to a whole new table of singles with every dish. Special guest Anita Chlipala of the Millionaire Matchmaker will MC, and a DJ will be on hand to get the dance party started after dinner. What have you got to lose?

When: Friday, February 14, 8 p.m.
Where: Epic, 112 North Hubbard Street (between Clark and LaSalle streets); 312-222-4940.
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Photo: Courtesy of Flirty Girl Fitness.
The Sexiest Way To Break A Sweat
Pole and naughty chair dancing? Yep, that's the type of workout you'll get at Flirty Girl Fitness. What better way to beat the Valentine's Day blues than by feeling, well, sexy? Tonight, both classes are on the schedule (for $25 each) starting at 6:30 p.m. Don't worry — if you're a bit nervous, there's a bar where you can grab a little liquid courage before showtime. And, hey, look at it this way: You never know when your newfound skills might come in handy.

Flirty Girl Fitness, 1325 West Randolph Street (between Elizabeth and Ada streets); 312-666-2266.
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Photo: Courtesy of Protein Bar.
Protein Bar’s Eat Your Heart Out!
Help Protein Bar celebrate the opening of its newest Lincoln Park location with its Valentine’s Day “Meet n’ Eat” event. Complimentary small plate appetizers will be passed around for you to share with a potential (wink, wink!) new special someone. And, you can both enter to win a $500 Protein Bar gift card, amongst other prizes. Better yet, 100% of food purchase proceeds will go to a cause near and dear to the heart: the American Heart Association.

When: Friday, February 14, 5:30 to 7:30 p.m.
Where: Protein Bar, 1953 North Clybourn Avenue (near Maud Avenue); phone number pending.
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Photo: Courtesy of Stage 773.
Cupid Has a Heart On At Stage 773
Lighten your mood with some comic relief at Stage 773’s performance of Cupid Has a Heart On. Full of satire and wit, this musical sketch-comedy group bestows its audience with a unique outlook on love, relationships, and life in general — all set to the tune of a live piano. The show has been critically acclaimed by local media outlets like the Chicago Tribune, Chicago Reader , and Time Out Chicago. But, if you can’t make the February 15 performance, check out the group’s one-night only V-Day show, Cupid in Your Pants (8 p.m., $35), which combines all of the aforementioned ingredients, plus, a goody bag (sweet!).

When: Saturday, February 15, 8 p.m.
Where: Stage 773, 1225 West Belmont Avenue (between Racine and Lakeview avenues); 773-327-5252.
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Photo: Courtesy of Polish and Pour.
Polish and Pour
Have the ultimate girls’ night out at this nail salon-and-bar hybrid. Formerly known as Arbre Nail Salon, this Old Town staple now serves up a full-bar alongside its manis, pedis, waxing, and reflexology treatments. Better yet? Ten 55-inch televisions hang overhead playing nothing but Sex and the City back to back. Relaxation, booze, and Carrie and Co.? What more could you want?

When: Monday-Friday 9:30 a.m. to 8 p.m., Saturday 9:00 am to 7 p.m., and Sunday 9:30 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
Where: Polish and Pour, 1244 North Wells Street (at Scott Street); 312-274-9935.
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Photo: Courtesy of Curt Swanson.
Our Very Favorite Activity
Um, who says you have to have a date to get a snazzy piece of jewelry on Valentine's Day? At String A Strand, you can make some bling of your own. The robust SAS inventory includes hand-selected semi-precious gems, 14-karat gold filled and sterling silver findings, chains, natural coral, and vintage beads — our personal favorite. The super-knowledgeable staff (made up of in-house designers) will assist you with selecting the right materials to create one of the most personalized pieces of jewelry you'll ever own. Now that's what we call a true labor of love.

String A Strand, 1361 North Wells Street (between Evergreen Avenue and Schiller Street); 312-335-1930.
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Photo: Courtesy of Bar Louie.
Valentine’s Day Mix-Up
Sponsored by Project Fixup and Chicago Twenty Something, this singles mixer lets you mingle over light appetizers, drinks, and conversation with hundreds of local unattached guys and gals. No, but really, hundreds! More than 200 people attended last year’s event, so the odds are in your favor. Your ticket price includes, entry, nosh, and two drinks. Sign up early to get the best rate on tickets: They’re currently going for $10 to $20 and can be purchased here.

When: Thursday, February 14, 6:30 to 9:30 p.m.
Where: Bar Louie, 335 North Dearborn Street (between Kinzie Street and Wacker Drive); 312-863-2363.
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Photo: Courtesy of Debonair Social Club.
A John Hughes Valentine’s Day Tribute
Pay tribute to the ultimate '80s rom-com filmmaker, John Hughes, with Debonair Social Club’s “A John Hughes Valentine’s Day Tribute.” Some of Chicago’s favorite local musical talent will be taking the stage (including members of Kill Hannah, Local H, Makeshift Prodigy, Gemini Club, Comasoft, The Lovehammers, Scott Lucas, and the Married Men) to perform hits from Hughes’ flicks in a collective crew known as “The Shermer High School Band,” (a nod to Hughes’ The Breakfast Club). Trust, you won't want to miss this ‘80s-style winter dance. Admission is $5 after 10 p.m. RSVP at Do312 for free admission.

When: Friday, February 14, 10:30 p.m. to 2 a.m.
Where: Debonair Social Club, 1575 North Milwaukee Avenue (at North and Damen avenues); 773-227-7990.
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