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UNM students Geronimo Romero Campbell and Cooper Lennon stand together near the Student Residence Center. 

5 and Why: 5 ideas for local dates for new couples

The weeks surrounding Valentine’s Day can be particularly nerve-wracking, especially for those in new relationships, but Albuquerque has plenty to offer in terms of activities for the dating scene. University of New Mexico sophomores Geronimo Romero Campbell and Cooper Lennon offered five ideas for simple but meaningful dates around Albuquerque for new couples.

Go to the movies

A classic date is a trip to the movies, according to Romero Campbell. He said the experience is simple and exciting, and there’s not much room for error. 

“There’s just not much that can go wrong … Everything is pretty much all set for you,” Romero Campbell said. “See what kind of person they are with the movies.”

An option for a local theater could be the Guild Cinema, which is located on Central Avenue and is just a short walk from campus. Other nearby theaters include Century Rio 24 and Regal Winrock, located near the @25 Shopping Center and Uptown, respectively.

Participate in a paintball tournament

While participating in a paintball match may not be an ideal first date for some, Romero Campbell said it is one of the best ways to pick out who’s going to stick around for you and who may not be the most reliable or supportive partner.

“You’ll really find out if they’re ride-or-die,” Romero Campbell said. “If it’s a Bonnie and Clyde type of thing … or if they’ll just kind of ‘peace out’ when things start to get rough.”

Ruckus Paintball is a paintball and airsoft arena in northern Albuquerque. Another local facility that offers paintball is Paintball Field Services.

Take a trip to a water park

To take the stress off of a date, Lennon recommended a trip to a water park, where you can both unwind together.

“You can relax, but it’s also a way to do something together … It’s something low-maintenance,” Lennon said. “Plus there’s always pretty good food.”

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Located off of San Mateo Boulevard, Watermania at Cliff’s Amusement Park has various water-based attractions, including slides and fountains. Although the location is closed for the season, this could be an option to follow Lennon’s advice when the weather warms up.

Go thrifting

Thrifting is a fun and easy way to get to know someone while maintaining a casualty that not many other activities offer, according to Romero Campbell.

“Their personality will really show through … Plus it’s inexpensive and just a lot of fun,” Romero Campbell said.

There are dozens of thrift stores throughout Albuquerque, including Savers, which has multiple facilities throughout the city, and Thrift Town.

Cook a meal together

Cooking and eating together is intimate and fun, according to Lennon, and allows for low-impact trials of conflict mediation.

“It’ll help you get to know them, and it’s just really nice,” Lennon said. “It isn't expensive and a good way to build your relationship.”

This month, Romero Campbell and Lennon are prepared to put their best feet forward in the world of dating and this list of date ideas can help their fellow students follow suit.

Natalie Jude is the culture editor at the Daily Lobo. She can be contacted at or on Twitter @nataloroni

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