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A safer spring fling: COVID-19 free dates for your April

Hikers walk up a Colorado trail. (Collegian File Photo)

Many of us crave that deep, affectionate, all-inspiring love that provides you with comfort and the feeling of being understood, but when rules of socialization changed due to the pandemic, it became increasingly difficult to just go on a date without feeling the guilt of further spreading COVID-19.

Now, over a year into the world’s worst extended spring break ever, not only do you probably need to get back out there but you absolutely deserve to. So here are some safe and fun ways to get on dating, whether it be your next fling or soulmate.


1. Go hiking

While this may not be the most romantic setting, a good hike gives you the time and space to learn about your date. Walking and talking is easy to accomplish, and if the date’s a dud you can just set your sights on the destination. The outdoors provide the perfect space to comfortably distance as well. So go swipe right on every person who puts “outdoorsy” in their profile, and put them to the test. 

2. Drive-in movies 

Though the Holiday Twin Drive-In Movie Theatre doesn’t open until April 9, it certainly is one fantastic place to take a date. The seclusion of being in a car makes sure that you aren’t exposed to strangers; you can have some real privacy to create more intimate moments with your date. You can create an environment that is safe to your comfort level and still enjoy the feeling of actually going out. Bonus points if you bring your own snacks and some cozy blankets.

3. Picnic dates

This date definitely sets more of a romantic tone, but with the weather making a turn for the sunnier, it may just be the perfect way to relax and enjoy your date. You can customize the setting and food, just vibe to your music and get to know each other. You can easily let this type of date lead into other activities as well.

4. Hammocking 

Hammocking is perfect for a laid-back date. Going into the mountains to enjoy the fresh air and some welcome company sounds like a total vibe. Imagine you’re chilling in the sun, listening to some indie tunes and talking with this great person you’re just getting to know. It seriously does not sound like a bad way to spend the afternoon, regardless of the pandemic.

5. Art shows 

Oh my goodness, go to an art gallery. They’re so clean, so lovely and not usually busy nowadays. You can talk about art with your date and make fun of the wonky things that artists produce, and there’s hardly a safer COVID-19 date than this. So go and channel your inner art critic — you won’t regret it.

6. Stargazing

Take advantage of the location in which you live! The night sky is easily visible from Fort Collins, and with the aid of a picnic blanket and some quick research online, you can easily master this date. Outside distancing should be of no issue, and if you can point out a few constellations in the sky, your date will most definitely be impressed. Take the time to look up astrological events, online resources like The Collegian’s astronomy calendar can be incredibly helpful. You never know when a meteor shower might correspond with date night, and bonus points if you manage to combine this date idea with a picnic.

Dating has definitely changed with the COVID-19 pandemic, but it doesn’t have to limit you in every aspect of life. Utilize the warm weather and get back out there — you never know what you’ll experience.

Ivy Secrest can be reached at or on Twitter at @IvySecrest.

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Ivy Secrest
Ivy Secrest, Content Managing Editor
Ivy Secrest is The Collegian's content managing editor. Secrest uses she/her/hers pronouns and has worked for The Collegian previously as a reporter and as life and culture director for the 2022-23 academic year. As a senior in the journalism and media communications department, Secrest enjoys reporting on environmental and social issues with a special interest in science communication. She is president of the Science Communication Club and is pursuing a minor in global environmental sustainability with hopes of utilizing her education in her career. Growing up in Denver, Secrest developed a deep love for the outdoors. She could happily spend the rest of her life hiking alpine environments, jumping into lakes, taking photos of the wildflowers and listening to folk music. She's passionate about skiing, hiking, dancing, painting, writing poetry and camping. Secrest's passions spurred her career in journalism, helping her reach out to her community and get involved in topics that students and residents of Fort Collins truly care about. She has taken every opportunity to connect with the communities she has reported in and has written for several of the desks at The Collegian, including news, life and culture, cannabis, arts and entertainment and opinion. She uses her connections with the community to inform both managerial and editorial decisions with hopes that the publication serves as a true reflection of the student body's interests and concerns. Secrest is an advocate of community-centered journalism, believing in the importance of fostering meaningful dialogue between press and community.

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