February 7, 2008


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A Valentine’s night out
Dance, eat, swing with your sweetie
By Alec O’Meara aomeara@hippopress.com

It’s one week until Valentine’s Day, which means there are probably a lot of guys out there looking for ideas to throw together a romantic evening at the last minute. Sure, there are probably a few who have planned ahead, but there’s another group that finished up watching the Super Bowl, looked at the calendar, and thought, “Uh-oh, what am I going to do for her this year?” If dinner at home isn’t going to cut it this time around, try one of these ideas:

• Valentine’s Day swing: The Compaq Big Band will be hosting the sixth annual Valentine’s Dance on Friday, Feb. 15, at 7:30 p.m. at the Crown Plaza Hotel, 2 Somerset Parkway, Nashua. The 21-piece band plays high- energy big band and swing music. Tickets cost $15, and half-table (four seats) and full-table (eight seats) reservations are accepted. Call 673-7683.

• Silent film: Harold Lloyd’s hit 1924 silent comedy Girl Shy, about love and romance, will be shown at the Palace Theatre in Manchester on Thursday, Feb. 14, at 7 p.m. with new original scores performed live by local composer and musician Jeff Rapsis (Hippo’s classical writer). Tickets cost $5, and the first 25 couples will receive a complimentary long-stemmed rose courtesy of Jacques Flowers of Manchester. Call 668-5588.

• Buckwheat Zydeco: Zydeco artist Buckwheat Zydeco, also known as Stanley Dural Jr., will be the featured musician at the Stone Church Music Club’s Valentine’s Day Dinner on Thursday, Feb. 14, at 8 p.m. at the Stone Church, located at 5 Granite St. in Newmarket, N.H. Zydeco music is an upbeat, Cajun-stylized form of blues. Tickets for the concert cost $25 in advance, $30 at the door. Call 659-6321.

• Romantic concert for a cause: Grammy award-winning acoustic guitarist Ed Gerhard is planning a special Valentine’s Day Concert on Saturday, Feb. 15, at 7:30 p.m. at the French Auditorium at 148 Concord St., Manchester. The concert doubles as a fundraiser for the New Hampshire Institute of Art. Tickets cost $25 per person and can be purchased by calling 836-2546.

• Ballroom party: The Queen City Ballroom, 21 Dow St. in Manchester, is holding a Valentine’s Day Dance Party on Saturday, Feb. 9, from 7 to 10 p.m. Both singles and couples are invited to attend, as are dancers of all ability levels. Tickets cost $8. To learn more, call 622-1500 or visit the ballroom’s Web site at www.queencityballroomnh.com.

• Make a donation: If your heart is truly overflowing, why not give blood? The American Red Cross is holding a special National Donor Day in conjunction with local Saturn car dealerships. Donate at the American Red Cross Donor Center at 425 Reservoir Ave. in Manchester on Thursday, Feb. 14, from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Donors get sweet treats and Saturn goodie bags. Call 625-1951 to learn more.

• Valentine’s Café: The Pine Waldorf School, located on Abbot Hill Road in Wilton, is holding a special “Valentine’s Café” on Friday, Feb. 8, at 7 p.m. Couples will have the chance to enjoy desserts while school faculty entertain with poetry and music, including the premiere of an original composition by guitarist Logan Gabriel. Tickets cost $20 and are available at the door or by calling 654-6003. .

Flutist Rebecca Jeffreys will be one of the featured musicians at the one-time Valentine’s Café at the Pine Waldorf School on Friday, Feb. 8