It’s officially cuffing season, celebrate the holiday season with some date ideas!

Mallory Pace, News Editor

December is here which means the temperature is dropping, leaves are falling, and people are coupling up.

Whether you hate it or love it, the colder months of the year are typically labeled as “cuffing season” as people seek out partners to spend the holidays with and do all those romantic and gushy holiday activities together.  

Spinnaker put out an Instagram poll asking students their opinion on cuffing season—21% said they love it, 33% hate it and for the 46% who said they don’t know what it is, you do now. 

For some, this is a great time of the year when couples can finally make their hallmark dreams come true and drink hot chocolate, look at Christmas lights and kiss under the mistletoe.  

Others may dread spending another holiday season single or have lost all hope in love, but don’t fear; the holidays are the perfect excuse to ask out that special someone you’ve had your eye on. 

A select few of the (many) holiday date ideas

If you’re looking for a romantic night on the town, visit the Night of Lights in downtown St. Augustine. Every building and tree is engulfed in twinkling bright lights, painting the city a holiday wonderland.  

Tickets are available for the Night of Lights Trolley Tour which takes you around downtown to see all the lights while holiday music is played throughout the journey. Although, driving around the town yourself works just as well.

The trees in Plaza de la Constitucion, a park in downtown St. Augustine, are adorned with lights during the annual Night of Lights in this Dec. 2021 photo. (Carter Mudgett)

Haley Abbott is a first-year University of North Florida student studying elementary education who said her favorite holiday date idea includes driving around looking at Christmas lights and drinking hot chocolate. 

At the heart of downtown, St. George Street is lined with restaurants, ice cream shops, and many interesting stores to shop in. For dinner, a safe choice is always A1A Burrito Works Taco Shop. A local favorite is The UFO dish and trust me, you’re going to want to try it. 

You can take your partner or a group of friends to experience everything downtown St. Augustine has to offer, including being the perfect place for holiday card photo-ops. 

Take a trip to Target and spice up the dress code by purchasing matching pajama sets to watch movies in. Target offers a wide variety of patterns and styles… even one for the dog!  

If a cozy night in sounds more appealing, there are plenty of ways to get in the holiday spirit from the comfort of home. Set up a hot chocolate bar with different toppings and ingredients. If you want to make it a party, you could even implement a BYOM—Bring Your Own Mug. 

Hot chocolate is one of those holiday drinks you just can’t get enough of. (Mekht/Unsplash)

Whether it’s a table for two or a whole group, there are plenty of festive activities to do at home. You could do a cookie decorating contest, build gingerbread houses or design your own ornaments.  

Third-year political science major Olivia Stoutamire responded to Spinnaker’s Instagram poll with her ideal holiday date. 

“Baking cookies and watching Christmas movies,” Stoutamire said. 

If you’re the party-thrower type, an ugly holiday sweater party is always a hit. Have each friend bring their own take on a holiday snack or drink for the group. If you’re 21+, there are some very creative holiday-inspired cocktails out there.  

Just because it doesn’t snow in Florida (or hardly ever drops below 60 degrees) doesn’t mean you can’t participate in classic winter activities like ice skating… indoors.

Community First Igloo, home of the Jacksonville Icemen, is a popular indoor ice-skating rink. Laughter is sure to follow as you watch each other fall on the ice while professionals skate laps around you just to show off their skills. 

Ice skating is a fun and playful holiday activity, especially for first dates because there’s so much going on around you, making for plenty of icebreakers… you can even use that horrible pun as one.  

It doesn’t matter whether you’re coupled up or if you’re on a hiatus from relationships; holiday activities and dates are for everyone to enjoy. Live in the moment this holiday season, take time to appreciate what you have, and hold onto every fleeting moment. Take risks, go on dates, and make the best gingerbread house this world has ever seen.


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