Even during the great plagues of the past, people managed to meet, court and fall in love. So with COVID-19 dragging on and making social distancing as important as ever, local venues have found creative ways to celebrate the most famous day of love.
Whether with games, delicious dinners, wine, music or the timeless gift of chocolate, people in the Susquehanna Valley can find a variety of ways to celebrate Valentine’s Day.
Susquehanna Valley Chorale Singing Telegrams
For the person who has everything, why not send a singing telegram for Valentine’s Day?
The Susquehanna Valley Chorale is offering a two-minute video that includes members of SVC Limited singing “Hello! My Baby.” Patrons may attach a personal message to accompany the telegram, which can be ordered at www.SVCMusic.org.
The singing telegram is one of the SVC’s creative responses to a completely virtual season. “Everyone was immediately excited about the idea,” said Adam Dietz, marketing and development liaison for the chorale. “I mean, who does singing telegrams anymore? And since many of us can’t be together with our loved ones these days, we thought this could provide the perfect solution.”
It also gave members of SVC Limited, comprised of core singers from the larger chorale, a chance to work on a project of their own.
“As their director, I think they really stepped up to the plate on this,” Dietz said. “It was not an easy piece to learn independently at home, sing, and record without other voices around you when it involved such tight, fast-moving harmonies. Thankfully, through the wonders of technology, we were able to successfully pull off what I feel is a very cool finished product.”
The singing telegrams give the effect of singing straight to the person receiving the email.
“The whole thing is very short and sweet, and we hope that people will consider sending it, not only to their significant other, but to friends and family members as well,” Dietz said. “The driving motto, so to speak, behind the entire initiative was, ‘Let’s spread some love.’”
Shanty Secrets, Danville
Maybe you can’t attend a live theater production, but Shanty Secrets has created a six-act meal that begins with a complementary Hearts on Fire cocktail and works its way through toasted crostini, salad, soup and sorbet to climax with a choice of filet mignon, chicken with mushrooms and squash, salmon with brown sugar glaze, or Tuscan pesto pasta. After treating yourself to that performance, sit back and enjoy the Grand Finale, berry chocolate trifle with butterscotch drizzle.
“For Valentine’s Day we tried to craft a meal with dietary preferences and flavor preferences that coincide with each other but also provide a burst of flavor with every course,” said Zach Weidner, social media and party requests at Shanty Secrets, adding that the meals are made with fresh ingredients bought daily.
He noted that Chef Kristian Adams creates elevated meals like that every weekend, and that Shanty Secrets is fortunate to have regular customers who arrive at least twice a month to savor the select dishes.
With pandemic concerns Shanty Secrets has had to reduce seating from 40 to about 14, creating a safer, more exclusive site. A few seats are still available for the Valentine’s Day dinner.
“We really want people to have an exclusive meal and experience when they come here,” Weidner said. “People always enter as strangers and leave as friends.”
Call 570-205-0398 to make a reservation.
Pine Barn Inn, Danville
Friday, Saturday and Sunday
One of the few places where you can enjoy a three-course meal while enjoying the warmth and glow of a fireplace, the Pine Barn Inn is offering both dine-in and takeout options.
They’ll feature handcrafted cocktails like Elderflower Spritz and Chocolate Raspberry Martini, as well as a special on bottles of Paso del Sol Merlot.
The Valentine’s Day menu includes choices of salads and soup, chicken Parmesan, surf and turf, crab cakes, 10-ounce flatiron steak, cornbread-stuffed pork loin and scrumptious desserts.
“If you’re looking for a nice, romantic dinner in a tavern by the fireplace, then the Pine Barn Inn would be a great choice for you,” said Chris Hill, director of sales and catering.
For reservations, call 570-275-2071, ext. 515.
Front Street Station, Northumberland
The choice is yours: Tickle your Valentine’s funny bone on Friday or step up to a karaoke mic to croon out a love song on Saturday. Or take advantage of both nights and celebrate your sweetie all weekend.
Friday, 8 p.m. – 10 p.m.
The Fun-Size Comedy Showcase, with an emcee and four comedians, has brought belly laughs and thigh-slapping hoots to the Front Street Station on numerous occasions, and will do so again on Friday.
“It’s a different night from your typical musical entertainment,” said Jay Seidel, owner of the Front Street Station. “Come in, have a couple of drinks and a good meal, and enjoy very funny entertainment.”
$10 cover charge. Same-evening meal receipt receives half-price admission.
Valentine’s Karaoke with Howie Miller of Midnight Jam Karaoke
Saturday, 8 p.m. – 11:55 p.m.
“People that have aspirations of being a rock god can get to fulfill their dreams for one day,” Seidel said. “It’s a special edition karaoke, so you can sing lots of songs to your sweetheart.”
Howie Miller, of Midnight Jam Karaoke, is a professional who engages the crowd, Seidel said.
“He’ll be dressed up,” he said. “I don’t know of anyone else who dresses up, but Howie always does. He’s great with the crowd.”
The Venue at Liberty Valley, Danville
Saturday, 5 p.m. – 7 p.m.
Indulge your loved one in a romantic evening featuring a six-course, served gourmet meal prepared by Catering for You. Begin with a charcuterie board, jumbo lump crab cake with parmesan remoulade or burrata cheese crostini, and continue with soup, salad, filet mignon or French-cut chicken chasseur, and end with a delicious dessert trio. Accept a complementary glass of wine or beer, available for dine-in or takeout options, and you’ll find yourself relaxing with a unique dining experience.
Adhering to prudent safety measures, seating for the two-hour dinner will be designed in phases (at 5, 6 and 7 p.m.) to allow for social distancing.
“Our elegant atmosphere and our high end dining experience is just truly magnificent,” said Mickayla Heim, manager at the Venue at Liberty Valley.
Reservations are required, 570-284-2182.
JESSE at Selinsgrove VFW Post 6631
Saturday, 7 p.m. – 10 p.m.
Celebrate Valentine’s Day rockin’ with JESSE, one of the area’s most enduring classic rock bands.
“The audience loves them,” said Joe Dubaskas, club manager at the Selinsgrove VFW. “They’ve got a great following.”
Food and drinks will be available for purchase, including chicken fingers, French fries, hot dogs and hamburgers, fish sandwiches and boneless wings.
For safety measures, the event is limited to 150 people, and facial masks must be worn.
$5 Cover charge.
Shade Mountain Winery & Vineyards, Middleburg
Saturday and Sunday, noon to 4:30 p.m.
Make it a sweet occasion with Shade Mountain Winery’s Valentine’s Day Box that includes three different wines paired with three different chocolates (compliments of Sweet Delights) — just enough for two to share. The winery will also offer hot cocoa wine with chocolate-covered marshmallows.
“The options we are providing are safe ones to be able to still enjoy Valentine’s Day and to help support and buy local,” said Cara Trego, marketing manager at Shade Mountain Winery. “Boxes are set up to be consumed outside on our deck or to take home to enjoy together.”
BTE Valentine’s Day Game and Party
Sunday, 3 p.m. to 5:30 p.m.
Pining away for your game board days? Pine no longer. Bloomsburg Theatre Ensemble is offering an online Valentine’s Day Game and Party. Join favorite BTE personalities for a celebration of love in a fun game and after-party. There’s no charge to play, but registration is required.
How does it work? After registering (at https://www.bte.org/valentine), players can choose an online token, roll the online dice, and see where Love takes them. Click on the spaces you land on for love messages, pick up cards to answer questions and move forward or back on the rocky path of true love.
At the end of the game, you will find the link to a live Valentine’s Day party, where you can join BTE’ers in more fun and games:
- Share Valentines Mad Libs.
- Act out scenes from iconic romantic movies
- Lip sync to famous love songs
- Share first love/broken heart/stupid crush stories
- Create the Candy Heart series for 2021
- Win a ticket to the first show in BTE’s 43rd Season, opening on April Fool’s Day, a unique and mysterious online event.
“I think what people will like most about the game are the videos that feature BTE personalities presenting a wide variety of perspectives on the madness we call love — some heart-warming, some funny, some touchingly personal,” said Peter Wiley, BTE marketing and communications director. “People who win the game (and everybody wins) will also enjoy hanging out with BTE actors and staff during the after party to share Valentines Mad Libs and see re-imaginings of love scenes from famous movies. They are an engaging bunch, I can tell you.”
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