Thrifty Valentine's Day Ideas: Game Night

by Catherine Sweeney, Creative Circle
February 3, 2015

Starting today and going through Valentine’s Day, we’ll be featuring one Thrifty Valentine’s Day Date Idea each day on our blog! You can subscribe to our blog on the right side of your screen, and have them sent directly to your inbox!

Vintage board games, comfort food, and delectable desserts are a winning combination for a Happy Valentine’s Day, whatever your relationship status. Think about an evening in with your sweetheart, or festivities with your friends. 

Try out these ideas:

First, check out your local Goodwill for favorite retro gameslike Yahtzee, Monopoly, Chinese Checkers, Scrabble, or that version of Clue from your childhood. Consider picking up some extra decks of playing cards or dominoes too.


  • Collect brightly-colored game pieces or marbles in thrifted mason jars and display them on your party table.
  • Make party placemats from game boards covered in contact paper. 
  • Paper-punch playing cards and hang them on a ribbon, or use them to make wine glass charms, as described in Camilla Fabbri’s Family Chic blog on Card Trick Drink Tags.

To keep a larger party circulating, create several game stations and set a timer to shorten the length of play of longer games.

Invite your friends to bring the most unusual or funniest game that they can find—and after you’ve played a few, do a white elephant gift swap!

Carry through the retro theme in your beverages, like Mad Men-style cocktails  or mocktailstry a cherry-flavored Michigan Fizz.

Make your favorite “food is love” treats, like homemade Mac and Cheese with mix-ins, mini meat balls, grilled sandwiches cut with a heart-shaped cutter, or a heart-shaped pizza, as shown on Allrecipes, You just might find a bread-maker for that pizza dough at Goodwill, plus extra crock-pots or oven-friendly cookware.

Well-washed game pieces are perfect cupcake toppers. Prepare your own, or pick up Cupcake Royale’s Valentine’s Dozen or super-decadent Death Cake.

For lots of variations on game night ideas, check out these blogs:
Moore Minutes   |   Brit and Co   |   Epicurious

Have fun—and if your singles’ game night includes a round of Twister, we promise not to tell anyone! 

This is part of a series on Thrifty Valentine's Day Date Ideas. For more ideas, click here: Valentine's Day


Catherine Sweeney, APR is a professional writer and communicator affiliated with Creative Circle. She dedicates her Goodwill blog-writing in memory of her mom, an avid thrift-shopper and advocate for social change. 

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