12 flirty ways to celebrate Valentine’s Day this year in and around Sacramento

Photo courtesy of the Crocker Art Museum

All you need is love—and this list of events—to celebrate this Valentine’s Day in style. From a screening of Casablanca to a ’90s prom-themed soirée, here are 11 swoon-worthy events that will set your hearts aflutter (and one for the anti-V-Day crowd). 

Sex With Strangers

Through Feb. 18 Just in time for Valentine's Day, EMH Productions stages the Sacramento premiere of Laura Eason’s witty, adults-only play, which debuted at Chicago’s Steppenwolf Theatre Company in 2009 and has been described by Variety as “an uncommonly satisfying two-person dramedy about relationships in the iAge.” Ethan is a 28-year-old blogger who has found success chronicling his myriad sexual encounters online; Olivia is a 40-ish teacher whose novel suffered at the hands of critics, leading her to shy away from the literary world. Upon meeting, they realize an attraction, as well as the potential for mutual gain, but the relationship turns ugly when ambition leads to mistrust. $20. Thurs.-Sat. 8 p.m. William J. Geery Theatre. 2130 L St. 214-6255. emhpros.weebly.com

Port, Wine and Chocolate Lover’s Weekend

Feb. 11-12 Clarksburg’s Old Sugar Mill will provide a smorgasbord of perfect pairings at this annual gala for gourmands and sweethearts. Fourteen wineries—13 of which have permanent tasting rooms in the historic building, including Carvalho Family Winery and Clarksburg Wine Company—will match after-dinner wines (like Heringer Estates’ Embrace Port or Rendez-vous Winery’s Malbec dessert wine) and other varietals with decadent confections from chocolatiers like Sacramento’s Kobasics Candies and Capital Confections. The event will also feature food trucks, as well as an opportunity to bottle your own port from a barrel ($25), seal the bottle with wax and decorate it for the wine lover in your life. $40 ($29 in advance). Sat. & Sun. 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Old Sugar Mill. 35265 Willow Ave. Clarksburg. 744-1615. oldsugarmill.com

Prom 2017

Feb. 11 Dig those chunky heels, glitter body sprays and Nehru jacketed tuxedos out of the attic for this ’90s-themed prom party at the Crocker Art Museum, where drinks will be flowing and couples can dance arms-length apart or cheek-to-cheek. Whether you're channeling your inner Courtney Love or Posh Spice, you can get jiggy with it on the dance floor while DJ Epik spins the likes of Salt-N-Peppa, Blink-182, SoundGarden and other pre-Y2K hitmakers, and enter your name in an auction for a chance to win some bling-bling from Sharif Jewelers. The Crocker has even created a special Spotify playlist to pump you up for the prom night party. Cool beans! $65-$190 ($75-$200 at the door). 8 p.m-12 a.m. Crocker Art Museum. 216 O St. 808-7000. crockerart.org

Photo courtesy of the Crocker Art Museum

Race for Justice Valentine Run/Walk

Feb. 11 Spread the love this Valentine’s Day weekend by entering this 14th annual race to support the nonprofit Legal Services of Northern California. Choose between a 1.8-mile or 4-mile course though the Arden Park neighborhood and come decked in Valentine’s Day-themed attire (think red and pink tutus and cupid costumes) for a chance to win a prize in the best-dressed cowntest, which also offers a category for four-legged loved ones. Youngsters can get their hearts beating in one of three fun runs leading up to the main event and hang in the bounce house at a kids’ zone while you race to the finish. Prices and times vary. Country Club Plaza Mall. 2310 Watt Ave. 551-2164. isncrun.info

Sweethearts Birds & Brew

Feb. 11 Lovebirds can head to Auburn’s Knee Deep Brewing Co. for this Gold Country Wildlife Rescue benefit where you’ll meet wildlife ambassador Bella, a 7-year old great horned owl, and more than a half-dozen other winged creatures, like falcons and hawks, that the organization has rescued. Grab a slice of wood-fired pizza from local food truck Bella Familia and wash it down with a pour of Stoutella, Knee Deep’s chocolate hazelnut milk stout. Newcastle-based Raffine Chocolates will also be dishing out owl-shaped confections throughout the evening. $10-25. 3-9 p.m. 13395 New Airport Rd. Auburn. 530-797-4677. goldcountrywildliferescue.org

Xoso “Colors” Valentine Crawl

Feb. 11 Back for its ninth year, this midtown bar crawl hosted by the Xoso Sport and Social League—whose motto is "Who says adults can't have recess?"—has seen up to 400 participants in years past. The dress code makes it simple to discern the relationship status of those you meet: single folks wear red, the undecided few wear blue and those lucky in love wear black. Tickets get hoppers three drinks and discounted fare at the bars along the route. $20-$30. 4-11 p.m. Midtown Sacramento. xoso.webconnex.com

Photo courtesy of the Race for Justice Valentine Run/Walk

I Heart Sacramento Zoo

Feb. 12 Grab your funny valentine and head to the Sacramento Zoo, where scaly and furry residents, including lions, red pandas, chimpanzees, giraffes and reptiles, will be gifted V Day-themed enrichments—think heart-shaped frozen treats and piñatas, as well as boxes wrapped in lovey-dovey-looking paper—throughout the day. Zoo Teens will also be on hand to answer critter questions and provide information about the animals, like their native habitats and eating habits. $11.75 ($7.75 for ages 2-11). 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Sacramento Zoo. 3930 W. Land Park Dr. 808-5888. saczoo.org


Feb. 14 Tower Theatre is honoring director Michael Curtiz with a showing his 1942 Academy Award-winning classic Casablanca, in celebration of the iconic film's 75th anniversary. The romantic drama about love, loss and honor in wartime centers on Humphrey Bogart's Rick Blaine, the embittered expatriate owner of Rick's Café Américain, located in the titular North African port city, whose cynicism and patriotism are challenged when former flame Ilsa Lund (Ingrid Bergman) turns up in his gin joint alongside her husband, a hero of the French Resistance, igniting what may be the greatest love triangle since Antony and Caesar met Cleopatra. $7. 7 p.m. Tower Theatre. 2508 Land Park Dr. 422-0985. readingcinemasus.com

From JayJay with Love

Feb. 14 Embrace your love of art this V-Day at the unveiling of “From JayJay with Love,” a new exhibit at the eponymous East Sacramento gallery that will be on display through March 25. Sip and savor complimentary sparkling wine and chocolates while you immerse yourself in the season’s pink, red and white hues and get acquainted with the works of JayJay’s newest art pieces: the patchwork of stretched canvas paintings reminiscent of kaleidoscopes by local abstract artist Rick Siggins and the travel-inspired, multi-layered, mixed media oeuvres of Bay Area artist Mark Eanes. Free. 5-7 p.m. 5524 Elvas Ave. 453-2999. jayjayart.com

Photo courtesy of the Sacramento Zoo

Valentine’s Dinner Train

Feb. 14 All aboard this romantic Sacramento River Train excursion, which will take guests on a two-and-a-half-hour sunset ride from West Sacramento to Woodland and back again. Watch the sun go down over the Delta as you feast on a three-course dinner that includes mains like Parmesan-crusted salmon or vegetarian Wellington, with a trio of cheesecake for dessert. After dinner, sip wine and cuddle up with your sweetie in one of the train’s open-air cars. $105. 6:30 p.m. Boarding at 400 N. Harbor Blvd. in West Sacramento. 800-866-1690. sacramentorivertrain.com

Cupid’s Revenge Pub Crawl

Feb. 18 The Queen of Dating, a local business that offers coaching to Sacramento singles and dating couples, will host this third annual night on the town geared toward bucking up the post-Valentine's Day spirits of cynical singles, with stops at seven downtown and midtown bars and restaurants. The evening begins at Cornerstone Café & Bar and will make its way to hotspots like Buckhorn Grill, Broderick, Saddle Rock and Capitol Garage for happy hour small plates and drink specials. Don't forget to don your best anti-cupid garb for a chance to win gift cards in a costume contest. $10-$15. 3-9 p.m. Cornerstone Café & Bar. 24th St. 546-8387. thequeenofdating.com

Russian Romance

Feb. 18 Let the music do the talking at the Folsom Lake Symphony’s premiere of this swoon-worthy concert at the Harris Center in Folsom, which will feature three masterful compositions: Dmitri Shostakovich’s Festive Overture; Sergei Prokofiev’s selections from Romeo and Juliet; and Peter Tchaikovsky’s Violin Concerto (featuring guest soloist and violinist Jessica Linnebach, who has performed with the likes of Yo-Yo Ma and Gary Graffman. $25-$59 (seniors and students get $5 discount). 7:30 p.m. Harris Center. 10 College Parkway. Folsom. 608-6888. folsomlakesymphony.com

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