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10 Date Ideas That Don't Take Place In a Bar

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Trying to figure out where to meet people? (If you're going the online route, make sure you know these Online Dating Tips for Tech-Saavy Singles.) Most of us have the same go-to: a bar. But your local pub isn't always the best choice for finding love. "Alcohol, loud music, and large crowds aren't the most ideal setting for new relationships and romance," says Barbie Adler, founder and president of matchmaking service Selective Search. "It's nearly impossible to initiate a serious conversation in a loud bar on a Friday night. Instead of figuring out if you have anything in common with someone, you're often left trying to figure out what they were even saying." 

While liquid courage most certainly helps steel your nerves, it doesn't necessarily make you the best judge of character. "Chances are the person may have seemed charming, funny, and smart after your third or fourth drink," she says. But once you sober up—who knows! This isn't to say that meeting the love of your life at a bar isn't possible, but restricting yourself to only looking for someone special at a watering hole severely limits your options, she adds. (Psst.. Did you know His Smile May Determine Whether He's Boyfriend Material.)

So where else should you be searching? Well, according to new findings from Selective Search, there's a whole world of cuties waiting other places. (Catch his eye with Beauty Tweaks That Are Big Turn-Ons for Guys.) The matchmaking service surveyed their clients to gauge the best places they've met a past partner and best first date spots. Their top 10 places to meet a mate?

1. Comedy Show
2. Museum/ Art Gallery
3. Dog Park
4. Coffee Shop
5. Board Game Bar
6. Sunday Brunch
7. Sporting Event
8. Fitness Class
9. Trivia Night
10. Cooking Class

"Locations like these are ideal for single people looking to find their match because they offer conversation starters and basic shared interests," Adler says. If you meet someone in a yoga class for example, you both have a jumping off point where you can begin to narrow the playing field a bit more. Comedy shows, art galleries, and sporting events all serve up conversation starters on a platter. The best part? All of these locations are indoors, making them ideal for keeping you cozy in the winter.

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