Metro-East News

Here's your last-minute guide for cheap, weird and fun Valentine's Day date ideas

An employee at the Belleville Crossings White Castle pauses to take a photo of the wedding inside the White Castle.
An employee at the Belleville Crossings White Castle pauses to take a photo of the wedding inside the White Castle.

Tired of the same old Valentine’s Day hoopla? You could trade the candy and flowers in for a tattoo and (almost free) chicken wings this year. From cheap eats to free fun for the whole family, here's your guide to out-of-the box and cheap Valentine's Day fun.

Let’s start with dinner

If you're single or just looking to have some fun with your mate, bring a photo of your ex to Hooters where you can earn 10 free boneless wings with the purchase of 10 wings on Wednesday. Shred the photo right on the spot then eat your emotions and forget about them. The Hooters Valentine’s Day deal of buy 10 wings, get 10 boneless wings free is available for dine-in customers only. Call ahead for wait times. Last year a crowd showed up for the fun at the Hooters location at 301 Market Place Suite C in Fairview Heights.

Skip the trinkets, get a tattoo

It doesn't matter if you are heartbroken or in love. Almighty Tattoos in Belleville will slash the price of a tattoo down to $20 on Valentine’s Day. Customers will have hundreds of designs to choose from noon to 9 p.m. Wednesday. Get there early if you want to get inked, the last time the shop, located at 4719 W. Main St. , ran a special the line was wrapped around the door.

Looking for more cheap eats?

Don't sleep on the idea of going to White Castle. The restaurant doesn’t offer table side service every day. Servers will bring your sliders to the table from 4 to 9 p.m. Wednesday at White Castle locations nationwide. Want to go? It’s best to make a reservation at

Buy flowers from a good florist, and cut stems at an angle under water if they ever go dry.

Share your love of art

You don’t have to spend a lot of money to have a good time. The Saint Louis Art Museum offers free admission year-round and to celebrate Valentine’s Day, the museum is passing out free paper hearts. What's the deal with that? The museum wants you to show love to your favorite pieces of artwork by placing a paper heart underneath or nearby. Don't forget to snap a photo to share with your friends and family on social media.

Celebrate with the family over the weekend

If you’re looking for a way to celebrate your love for everyone in the family, head to the movies this weekend.

If you go Feb. 16 -18, your tickets will be $3 each at the recently renovated O’Fallon Cinema at 1320 Central Park Drive. What can you see for that price? Answer: “Captain Underpants: The First Epic Movie.” Concession specials will include popcorn and fountain drinks for $2.75 each. The movie starts at 10 a.m.

After the movies, you could head to a haunted house. This suggestion isn't as cheap as the others, but it will get you out of a Valentine's slump if you're in one. Located at 1525 S. 8th St. in St. Louis, just north of Soulard Market, the haunted house dubbed The Darkness will include a TerrorVisions 3-D area and play Zombie Laser Tag against "real" zombies. The cost is $30 per person. Want to go? The haunted house will welcome sweethearts and singles from 7 to 11 p.m. Feb. 17.

Senior living communities around Belleville received 100 roses as a Valentine's Day surprise from first time mom and BND reporter Cara Anthony. She visited St. Paul's Senior Community, Westfield Manor, and The Atrium of Belleville.