Due to COVID, a lot of our annual traditions in LA were placed on hold last summer. This year, we were really excited to hear that many of our favorite activities came back. Below is a list of what we’ve been up to so far. These are also all great date night ideas!
Shakespeare in the Park
For the past few summers, we have gone to Shakespeare in the Park at Griffith Park. I’ve been in love with Shakespeare in the Park since I saw my first production of Much Ado About Nothing during a high school summer program at UC Santa Cruz. When I discovered that they had a Shakespeare summer festival at Griffith Park, I dragged Mark and anyone else I could to it. The best part about it is that it’s FREE! Another bonus is that you can bring your own food for a picnic. In the past, you had to arrive really early to get a good seat. This summer, due to COVID-19, you have to make online reservations. However, this means you get your own reserved seating section and can show up whenever you want. If you go, I recommend bringing blankets, warm layers, pillows, bug spray, and a flashlight. Another tip is to pick up food near Griffith Park. We ordered sandwiches and dessert from Alcove Cafe and it was delicious!
Melrose Rooftop Theater
There are countless places to catch an outdoor movie in LA. However, our favorite place is Melrose Rooftop Theater on top of LP Restaurant. The venue is stunning as it’s located in the heart of Hollywood. Since it’s a 21 and over theatre, it makes a perfect date night. Their movie lineup includes classic and modern movies. Upon arrival, you receive wireless noise cancelling headphones and can sit on any unreserved bean bag. They do not allow outside food or beverages. However, you can order food and drinks on their app. Pre-COVID, the ticket used to include limitless popcorn and a blanket. Now you have to purchase everything separately. However, we still prefer Melrose Rooftop Theatre over other movie options in LA. If you go, I recommend you bring blankets or wear warm layers. It can get chilly at night!
Finally, we decided to try something new this summer and watch Jaws 2 while on a boat in the middle of a lake. In hindsight, this was not the most relaxing date night idea. Watching a movie about a killer shark while you are in the water, AT NIGHT, definitely added some suspense. Boat Cinema came to Castaic Lake this year, which is technically located outside of LA County. However, I’m still going to include it on our list of Summer Nights in LA.
When you arrive, the staff provides you with instructions on how to steer the boat, life jackets, and a whistle for emergencies. When you find your ideal spot on the lake, a staff member on a paddle board helps you anchor the boat so you don’t float away during the movie. You can bring up your anchor at any time in case you need to go to the restroom. You can also pre-order food, which they will bring to your boat.
We have very mixed feelings about this experience. It’s a really cool concept, and I’m glad we got to try it. It can feel a little overpriced for a date night, the boats can get uncomfortable, and they charge you for bringing for your own food. However, the staff was incredibly friendly and go out of their way to make sure you have a good experience. If you decide to go, I recommend inviting more people (maybe a double date) to bring the costs down. Another tip is to bring warm layers since it can get cold.