4 ways to celebrate Valentine’s Day in Ann Arbor

From a storytelling festival to a Galentine’s Day workshop, here are our recommendations


ANN ARBOR, Mich. – Like many holidays in 2020, Valentine’s Day in 2021 is going to feel different.

Make sure it’s one to remember (but in a good way) by showing your love with a special meal, a fun night in or a personalized piece of art. Spread the love by supporting local businesses with these suggestions.

Spend the night with some stories

Celebrate early by joining The Ark for its 34th annual Storytelling Festival on Feb. 13. as part of the free Ark Family Room Series. Listen to nationally-recognized storytellers Lyn Ford, Chetter Galloway, Antonio Rocha and emcee Steve Daut, president of the Ann Arbor Storytellers Guild.

More into movies? The Michigan Theater is offering a screening of “A Hero for a Night” (1927) at 3 p.m. on Valentine’s Day. Seats are limited for the film, which was offered at the opening of the Michigan Theater back in January 1928. There will also be a special pre-show event and original music score by organist Andrew Rogers. Get tickets here.

Read: SHARE: Got a funny or terrible Valentine’s Day story? We want to hear it!

Make something

Get creative at home by making art that has meaning to you and your loved one.

Work together to draw a design on a ceramic lidded container in one of Gutman Gallery’s Take & Make: Valentine’s Day Art Box. After crafting your personalized design, take it back to the gallery where underglaze will be added to help it reach its final form.

Looking for more romantic crafts? The Ann Arbor Art Center is offering special Valentine’s Day Art Boxes. Build your own boardgame, paint some pottery, etch your love into a copper plate or learn the basics of block printmaking.

Order some grub

Nothing says “I love you” like fancy cheeses, a good meal or a nice bottle (or two) of wine.

If you’re looking around Main Street you’ll see various eateries cooking up special menus or themed items. Get a heart-shaped Margherita pizza at Cottage Inn, try a special menu from Shalimar or Love On The Go multi-course menus from Chop House and Real Seafood Co. Check out more Valentine’s Day specials on Main street here.

Staying away from downtown? Check out a pop-up by Cookie Colab and artist Asha Jordan at York on Feb. 20, or reserve one of York’s Hearts in the Yard dining packages which include a cheese board, a bottle of wine and desserts from Ellen’s Fine Goods.

Read: Melon, bonfires, mass weddings: How Valentine’s Day has been celebrated around the world

Galentine’s Day

Swap out Valentines for Galentines.

RSVP to Rock Paper Scissors Galentine’s Day event on Feb. 13 for a swag bag, flower bouquets and hot cocoa bombs. Don’t want to go out or need something kid-friendly? The Ann Arbor shop offers curated gift boxes and cookie decorating kits for kids (or adults, we won’t judge).

Last but not least, sign up for an online Galentine’s Day workshop to be held on Feb. 12. The ladies-only event will include live instruction via Zoom for designer floral crowns with Jen House Design and a special cocktail from The Last Word.

About the Author:

Sarah has worked for WDIV since June 2018. She covers community events, good eats and small businesses in Ann Arbor and has a Master's degree in Applied Linguistics from Grand Valley State University.