10 Awesome Birmingham Dates to Try This Summer

Inspired by Jill Scott “A Long Walk”

“You’re here, I’m pleased. I really dig your company” These 8 words that start one of my favorite songs couldn’t be more fitting. Released 16 years ago, “A Long Walk” by Jill Scott is a staple in any neo soul lover’s music collection. Jill’s mastery of wordplay is undeniable as she tells her lover just what she thinks of him while also throwing out a few date ideas. Today, I will share 10 Birmingham Summer Dates with you based on her suggestions.

1. “Let’s take a long walk around the park after dark”
Birmingham, a city that holds 99 unique neighborhoods nestled into 151 square miles, has 110 parks including Birmingham Botanical Gardens recognized and managed by Birmingham Parks & Recreation. Our parks have a connection with New York’s Central Park in that they were designed by F.L. Olmstead’s sons. Technically, all city parks close at sunset so no long walks after dark. But a sunset walk is extremely romantic.

2. “maybe we can talk about …”
      a. Surah 31:18
      b. Revelation 3:17
      c. Psalms in entirety
I never noticed that Jill Scott referenced discussing 3 different religious texts before now. One is from the Quran and the others can be found in your bible. Most people say avoid religious talks when dating but honestly discussing religion and your beliefs will lead to 3 big revelations in your relationship; where your partner is spiritually/their religious beliefs, how they handle conflict, and their argument style. I’m still a big supporter of breaking the no religion talk on dates rule. This discussion date can be held at home, in a group setting, or at your local church or mosque.

Bible

3. “maybe we can see a movie”
Birmingham has a plethora of movie options that don’t include your local theater chain or Netflix during the summer. There’s Flicks Among the Flowers at Birmingham Botanical Gardens, Sidewalk Film Festival, Movies at Avondale Park, Coyote Drive-In Movie, and the Alabama Theatre has special showings of your favorite throwback movies.

Tickets on sale now. Lowest price of the season. Link in bio. #sidewalk19

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4. “maybe we can see a play on Saturday”
Although we’re not New York, Birmingham has a legit theatre scene. Birmingham Children’s Theatre is great place to take your family for a kid friendly date night while Virginia Samford Theatre provides year round classic and new, innovative plays and musicals.

Speculated by many to be the greatest of all American musicals, GYPSY tells the story of the dreams and efforts of one hungry, powerhouse of a woman to get her two daughters into show business. Loosely based on the 1957 memoir of famous striptease artist Gypsy Rose Lee, the memoir and the musical focus on the story of Gypsy Rose Lee’s mother, Rose, and earned Rose a place in the theatrical and literary canon as the quintessential, archetypal “Stage Mother.” Featuring the classic “Some People,” “Let Me Entertain You,” “Rose’s Turn,” and the show-stopping, “Everything’s Coming Up Roses”. Starring Kristi Tingle Higginbotham as Mama Rose. June 29 – July 16, 2017 Thursdays – Saturdays at 7:30 p.m. Sundays at 2:30 p.m. Tickets: $35 Center, $30 L & R, $15 Student VST Mainstage

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5. “maybe we can roll a tree and feel the breeze and listen to the symphony”
You aren’t allowed to roll a tree but you can definitely listen to the breeze rustle the leaves of the trees while listening to the symphony. The Alabama Symphony does paid performances year round but they do 3 nights of free concerts at RailRoad Park during the summer that’s amazing. Patrons are encouraged to bring blankets and a picnic to cool off while the symphony takes away all the stress of your day. Don’t forget to stop by Good People Brewing Company for a couple beers before.

6. “maybe chill and just be”
You can chill and just be anywhere but my favorite chill spot is 41 Street Pub & Aircraft Sales at the bar. The bartenders are super nice and knowledgeable about the history and mixing the perfect drink. Birmingham also has a planetarium that’s an amazing place to just be.

7. “maybe we can take a cruise and listen to The Roots”
If you’re reading this Schaeffer Eye Center, please bring back CityFest and The Roots!!!! I’m begging you!!! 2 years ago, you would’ve been able to cruise the city then stop at Railroad Park and catch the Roots for free at CityFest but now you’ll definitely have to follow this dating tip literally and cruise in the car with bae while listening to your favorite Roots songs. The alternative would be to go see Nappy Roots live at Zydeco on July 8.

Nappy Roots

8. “maybe eat some passion fruit”
The best place around town to find fresh fruit is your local Farmers’ Market. There are about a dozen in Birmingham to choose from. Check out this list to plan the perfect Farmers Market date to find some passion fruit but if you’re like me, I know you’ll likely be looking for the Chilton county peaches.

Movin' to the country… 🍑 #🎵 #happySaturday #localisbetter #farmingfeedsAL

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9. “maybe cry to the blues”
If I’m being honest, Birmingham is more of a jazz than blues city. In my search for Blues dates, I came across the Bob Sykes BBQ and Blues Festival happening May 20th and the infamous Gip’s Place as the only venue that may host blues artists regularly.

10. “maybe we could just be silent”
Now this is my kind of date. I find peace in the quiet, especially if I have a good book in my hands. Plan a date night in with bae to cuddle and read together or even watch a silent film. There’s nothing like a comfortable silence between lovers who just want to spend time with each other.

In the words of Jill Scott “Come on, come on” and share your thoughts with us below in the comments!

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5 Rules to Break When Dating

Monday morning my new favorite, mentions in shambles, blogger @StephRoyalty ‘s mentions once again in shambles. The topic, Pre-Dates.

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I never would’ve thought that this would be such a divisive topic. But then again, I should’ve known.  Caleb and I ultimately went on 3 pre-dates before making it official. We had a very unconventional courtship and honestly I think breaking the following 5 dating rules was  the best decisions we ever made.

  1. No Obligation Pre-Date – This is a casual meet up for you and a potential beau. There is no guarantee that he will pay for you and no a guarantee that it will lead to anything. At the most you’ll have an interesting story to tell your friends later. By our 3rd Pre-Date, Caleb asked me to be his girlfriend.
  2. Religion, Sex, and Politics Discussion – Everyone has been warned not to discuss the following topics at dinner with anyone and definitely not a date. Please toss this rule out of everyone’s rule book. These are important details that need to  be discussed ASAP. Discussing Politics is actually how Caleb and I started communicating.
  3. 1st Date Planned and Payed for by the Woman –  I’m a planner by nature with slight control issues. Even when Caleb plans a date, I still handle the logistics and details. It’s one of the reasons why I approached Vanessa about starting this blog.
  4. Discuss your exes – They ultimately change the way you view the opposite sex, relationships, and yourself. By facing our past head on, we were able to grow together and get rid of any hostility we held towards our exes.
  5. Hiding the ugly/family dysfunction – Every argument, breakdown, and embarrassing moment that could happen within the first few months of dating can and will happen. Caleb and I embraced them and rolled with the punches. Going through most of these moments brought us closer together.

What dating rules do you feel should be broken? What rules need updating? What about Pre-Dates? Share your thoughts with us below

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What About Your Friends

This time, two weeks ago, several of my friends prepared to travel from near or far for my wedding  weekend. They came from all over, D.C., Ohio, Georgia, Mississippi, and Tennessee were well represented. One of my out of town friends commented  on how she’s never known anyone in my age range that has as large of a consistent base of friends from all stages of life. For instance, my bridal shower headcount ended up being 26 with 31 invited. Keep in mind that only 12 attendees were family members which included 8 new sister in laws. So that means that I had 14 very close friends from elementary to first real job out of graduate school friends come out and support me.

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