It's easy to be cynical on Valentine's Day, but you won't have to do it alone since there's plenty to keep you fed and entertained in Tacoma. We've lined up the biggest and best V-Day events and specials in the Gritty City, from a Valentine’s Stop Light Party to Let There Be Love. You'll also find a bunch of dinner and drink specials (most with live music), at places like The Red Hot and Locust Cider & Brewing. Check out the top Valentine's Day events below, and see all of your options on our Valentine's Day calendar.
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FOOD & DRINK
Valentine's Day Menu at HG Bistro
Enjoy Valentine's Day with that special someone and enjoy shareable appetizers like Calamari Frites, Prosciutto-Wrapped Stuffed Prawns, Manilla Clams, and more. There's also plenty of entrees on the menu as well, from Sweet Pea Risotto to Lobster Pomodoro.
FOOD & DRINK
Pre-Valentine's Pre-Fixe Dinner Show with Playtonics
Get ready for Valentine's Day a day early, with a romantic four-course dinner paired with some tasty alcoholic beverages. The Jazzy Soulpop Allstars and the Playtonics are set to take the stage, in case you aren't in the mood to talk while you eat.
Valentine's Day Dinner for Two Featuring Mark Ryan Wines
Enjoy a four-course meal for two (whether the extra person tags along is entirely up to you) with wines from Mark Ryan winery such as the Lu & Oly Chardonnay, and Cabernet Sauvignon.
The Social Bar & Grill
Silent Movie: Lucky Star
Janet Gaynor and Charles Farrell star in this 1929 romance. The silent film will be accompanied by world-class theater organist Dennis James, as he plays the theater's Mighty Andy Crow Wurlitzer Organ.
Washington Center for the Performing Arts
FOOD & DRINK
Candy Shoppe at Dawson's Bar & Grill
Nothing says Valentine's Day quite like dinner and dancing. This no-frills event will offer a dinner special—8oz. New York steak with four coconut prawns, scalloped potatoes, salad, and a dinner roll for $15.99—and plenty of Motown and R&B hits from the '70s and '80s performed by Candy Shoppe. There'll also be drink specials featuring adult beverages called a Love Potion and Lover's Delight, which sound lovely.
Dawson's Bar & Grill
Valentine's Sweet Treats & Flights
This Valentine's Day party knows that everyone's really into the holiday for the sweets and the adult beverages. Enjoy specially prepared versions of both with flights of pink cider or beer and tasty treats from Johnson Candy Company.
Locust Cider & Brewing
Mad science and Valentine's Day get mixed together in the Red Hot's proprietary "Blend-O-Nator 5000," mixing up some one-of-a-kind beers like Lineman’s Strawberry Lambic and Knee Deep’s Stoutello Chocolate Hazelnut Milk Stout, which is topped with chocolate shavings.
The Red Hot
Valentine's Brewers Dinner - 2020
Go all out for Valentine's Day with this six-course dinner and unique beer pairings by chef Frank Magana and head brewer Aaron Blonden. The meal features such tasty treats as honey walnut prawns with sorrel sauce and a langoustine and crab ravioli with a tarragon cream sauce. If you're looking to impress someone this V-Day (or just treat yourself), this is the way to make it happen.
Three Magnets Brewing
Valentine's Day at Gertie & the Giant Octopus
A three-course meal at Gig Harbor's eccentric restaurant for Valentine's Day makes your decisions easier so you can get to the fun part of the ridiculous holiday.
Gertie & the Giant Octopus
Valentine's Day Dinner at Crudo & Crutto
Get your fill of decadent food with this three-course dinner that's finished off with a glass of Brachetto D’Acqui.
Crudo & Crutto
Dad-joke-shiller and ex-mulleted country crooner Blake Shelton (who is also famously dating Gwen Stefani) will bend Tacoma to his Top 40 appeal with additional guests on his Friends & Heroes 2020 nationwide tour.
For the Love of R&B
Swoon to the musical stylings of Sammie, the "Prince of R&B," this Valentine's Day, and stay for performances from D-Dazh, Kalieb Nash, Tiory Zhinique, and Zhonzell. It'll be a night to remember that's so much better than roses and a box of chocolates.
Freighthouse Station Marketplace
Jazz Orchestra feat. Delfeayo Marsalis
Premier jazz trombonist, composer, and producer Delfeayo Marsalis will perform with the University of Puget Sound jazz orchestra this Valentine's Day. The talented musician has been the recipient of a Jazz Masters Award and he has also toured with the Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra, Max Roach, and Elvin Jones.
Schneebeck Concert Hall, University of Puget Sound
The Lonely Hearts Club - All Ya Need Is Love - A Valentine's Gala
It doesn't matter who you are, there's probably at least one Beatles song you love. And while the Fab Four have been remanded to various music collections, the Lonely Hearts Club is a Beatles tribute band that understands playing pitch-perfect renditions of their songs is the only thing that matters. This show runs the gamut of the Beatles' legendary catalog, with renditions of everything from "Twist and Shout," "A Hard Day's Night," and "Help" to "Nowhere Man," "Taxman," and "Penny Lane."
Nothing says "I love you" quite like tributes to metal bands like Iron Maiden and Judas Priest. For those looking to shake things up on Valentine's Day, this quartet of heavy metal bands—Maiden Seattle, Judas Rising, RivetSkull, and LorPan—promises an unconventional and memorable approach to a holiday created to sell cards, candy, and flowers.
The Married Men
After some time away, the Married Men are back at it with a live performance on Valentine's Day. Though they'll be playing on the most romantic of all holidays, there's something for everyone at their show, which features songs about, yes, love, but also other universally potent themes such as heartache and unemployment.
Tacoma Brewing Company
Never Say Never Valentine's Day Social 2
It's a night of dining and dancing with DJ Aaron Hurts spinning tunes all night long. There's no cover, so you'll have a little extra scratch to impress your date with some food from the full menu (available until 1 am) and drink specials from the bar.
The Church Cantina
No Quarter [Zeppelin] • Barracuda [Heart]
McMenamins Elk Temple will rock this Valentine's Day as the venue opens its doors to Led Zeppelin and Heart tribute bands. The former has been honing their craft for more than 15 years, while the latter has been formally endorsed by Heart founding member Roger Fisher.
Screw Cupid Anti-Valentine's Day Party
While romantics are pairing off and canoodling with one another, everyone else can celebrate the single life at this anti-Valentine's Day party. There'll be plenty of drink specials and deals on entrees. Also, DJ Karaoke will be there to spin some tunes that are done with love.
Top Gun Bar & Grill
Valentine's Day Couples' Party
DJ Mr. Nyice Guy will be spinning tunes from the '70s, '80s, '90s, and 2000s all night long. Couples are invited to come early for specials on dinner and drinks before the dancing begins. There'll also be a raffle for a dinner for two at the Seattle Space Needle, and prizes for "Best Dressed Couple."
West of the Waterway
Valentine's Stop Light Party
DJ Reign presides over this color-coded dance party where green means you're single, red means you're in a relationship, and yellow means "come and ask me." If you've ever been unsure about your ability to read social cues and to gauge the interest of strangers, this may be the party for you.
Valentine's Day with Kit & Caboodle
The Kit & Caboodle DJ crew will be slinging records for couples and singles alike as guests enjoy specials on food and drinks.
READINGS & TALKS
Steve's Drunk History: The Candy Chronicles, The V-D Edition
Local historian Steve Dunkelberger's February talk will focus on Tacoma's connection to sweet confections that have become wrapped up in the commercialism of Valentine's Day. Steve will talk about Almond Roca and Mars candy and even Baskin-Robbins. But this V-D edition of Drunk History isn't entirely cold-hearted: there'll be chocolates and wine pairings during the free show.
Broken Spoke Tacoma
SPORTS & RECREATION
BOGO Sweetheart Skate
Grab your sweetie (or your friend, we won't judge) and lace up your skates, because admission is two-for-one this Valentine's Day. Sure, you'll still have to pay to rent skates, but think of all the tasty snacks you can enjoy with those sweet, sweet savings at the door.
Skate Tiffany's—Roller Skating & Family Fun Center
Sweetheart Special: Celebrate Valentine’s Day
Bring your significant other to the Museum Glass for the "Sweetheart Special" lunch from Choripan by Asado, while you watch local artisans craft their wares in the hot shop. Guests are encouraged to arrive early as there'll be two giveaways from the shop during the day.
Museum of Glass
FEBRUARY 14 & 16
Tosca, once described by ex-Stranger writer David Schmader as "Puccini's gorgeous funhouse of an opera, based on an 1887 melodrama tracking the travails of a celebrated opera singer, whose Category 4 emotional hurricanes are matched only by her power to enchant," will be taken on by the Tacoma Opera.
FOOD & DRINK
Valentine's Day 2020 at the Lady of the Lake
Valentine's Day becomes a weekend event, with live blues music being performed in the bar and a full menu of dinner and drink V-day specials all weekend long.
The Lady of the Lake
THROUGH FEBRUARY 23
Let There Be Love
In Mrianlini Kamath's Let There Be Love, a matchmaker and her son must confront their attitudes toward love when Eric takes control of his own personal life.
COMMUNITY & CIVICS
Love at the Zoo
It's not nearly as icky as it sounds. The animals are given special Valentine's treats and "enrichments," which apparently bring more of the "animal" out of the zoo's (permanent) guests for the enjoyment of spectators.
Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium
FOOD & DRINK
Galentine’s Cookie Party
No matter your relationship status, your friendships are deserving of a little celebration, too. Show your gal pals how much you appreciate them by decorating some cute and naughty cookies together and sipping on some special drinks.
Doyle's Public House
Valentine's Day at The Table
This Tacoma restaurant will offer a Valentine’s Day prix fixe menu featuring such coveted items as Japanese wagyu beef, moonfish, and a beef and sourdough ravioli.