LAKEVIEW — There's at least one benefit to Valentine's Day feeling more like an ode to consumerism than love — businesses step up their game to celebrate.
Lakeview's no different. We rounded up some gift and date options around the 'hood, whether you're still trying to find a date or if you're happy throwing a party for one.
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For the singletons who still want a Valentine's weekend date: Straight folk can try their luck at Headquarters Beercade, 2833 N. Sheffield Ave., on Thursday night from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m., where the retro-arcade game bar is hosting a speed dating event. How does it work? Singles hop from game to game until they hit a winner, romantically speaking. Tickets cost $10 and include two drinks and a shot.
For a last-minute gift that's still customized and interactive: One word: Pinata. Two Sided, 2958 N. Clark St., has a pinata bar that will be available until Saturday, Feb. 15. Several local artists made the pinatas, and Two Sided has loaded the store with candy and gifts to fill the pinata with — meaning last-minute gifters can still add their personal touch. Of course, the best part just might be breaking the pinata together later. Costs range from $14 to $29.
For the couples, movie buffs and singers: The Music Box Theatre has a big line-up for Valentine's Day weekend — from the annual sing-a-long before a screening of Casablanca to midnight showings of slasher My Bloody Valentine. And on Saturday night, sex columnist Dan Savage's popular HUMP! Film Festival has three showings that will be sexy, but organizers say it's more funny than anything else. Tickets cost $25.
For lovers looking for live shows that keep love light: Many of Lakeview's theaters will be hosting Valentine's Day-themed shows that will put a little humor in the holiday. The Cupid Players at Stage 773, 1225 W. Belmont Ave., will have a musical sketch comedy that features "a dancing fat guy." Laugh Factory, 3175 N. Broadway, will throw two shows of its Valentine's Day-themed stand-up, and ComedySportz, 929 W. Belmont Ave., will include holiday games in its improv shows this weekend.
For a self-loving Valentine's Day weekend: This weekend is also a perfect time to chill out with yourself. Suvarna Chiropractic, 3453 N. Southport Ave., has a special $49 deal for hour-long massages. Stop by Galleria Liqueurs, 3409 N. Southport Ave., afterward for a bottle of wine, or Southport Grocery, 3552 N. Southport Ave., for its special Valentine's butter cookies and cupcakes. Then go home. Order fried chicken from Crisp, 2940 N. Broadway, for delivery. Turn on Netflix. Relax.