Winter is synonymous with hibernation, and a season for hunkering down at home.
Combined with shortened days, chilly temperatures, and dreary skies, social isolation can lead many down the road of seasonal depression.
If you are feeling down as winter approaches, it is critical to reach out to friends and family and start planning some fun activities.
Once you start thinking creatively, you will be surprised at all the exciting cold-weather activities and social events you’ll want to try.
Read on for some fun group activities during the winter season!
1.) Ice Skating
Winter temperatures mean frozen lakes, ponds, and other bodies of water across the U.S.
Many of these are hard enough to skate on and can turn into scenic ice rinks right on your doorstep!
If there isn’t a natural lake near you, there are often outdoor ice-skating rinks where you can still participate in the fresh air with your friends!
2.) Get Courtside Seats
The regular NBA season runs October through April – right through the wintertime.
Grab a group of your friends and a row of seats! You can even make an evening of it by hiring a private shuttle bus service to take you to dinner or a few bars before and after the game!
3.) See A Concert
Winter is an excellent time to check out what artists and bands might be coming into town.
Even if you can’t find one of your favorites, why not try something new for an evening?
Score some discounted tickets, and you may discover unknown styles of music to love!
4.) Watch A Hockey Game
Hockey is another riveting winter sport. Whether you are seeing a professional or amateur team, this game is fast-paced and easy to follow, even for beginners!
Pick up tickets to your local team game, and get a hot chocolate on the way to your seats. You can feel the energy of a stadium even in the nosebleed section!
5.) A Photo Scavenger Hunt
Scavenger hunts are a unique activity to shake things up with your friends.
Make a creative list of photo opportunities, split them into teams, and spend an evening conquering the town!
Bonus points for those who take daring photos or interact with strangers.
6.) See The Lights!
Holiday lights are always a wonder to behold! Every year for a month or two, entire neighborhoods shine.
The practice of hanging holiday lights has become secular over the years – you can get in the winter spirit and put some snowflakes, candy canes, blue or white strands of lights, or snowmen in your yard.
Even if you don’t want to decorate, take a long drive around town and marvel at others’ festive decorations.
7.) Have A Potluck Meal
If you are intimidated by entertaining your friends, having a potluck is the ideal way to gather everyone without the entire effort of hosting.
Ask everyone to bring their go-to seasonal dish or a secret family recipe, plus a bottle of wine.
This takes the pressure off cooking for a group yet still allows everyone to enjoy the atmosphere of a dinner party.
8.) Snow Day Activities
If you’re lucky to live where it snows, you know what to do! Get out there and play!
There are endless snow activities – sledding, skating, tubing, snowshoeing, cross-country skiing, snowmobiling, snowman building, snow fort construction, and even just playing around making angels. Don’t forget to host a friendly snowball fight!
9.) Patronize The Arts
Winter is an excellent time to support your local performing arts community.
Theater houses, operas, and ballets often have seasons that run through the winter.
There is no better plan for an evening with friends than dinner and enjoying a show, whether it’s a play, symphony, dance performance, or comedy club.
10.) A Progressive Dinner Party
Plan a progressive dinner party, or safari supper, with a group of friends this winter!
Instead of placing the burden of cooking on one host, pick three or four houses and have a course at each!
Ask friends to choose to sign up for the appetizer, soup or salad, main entree, or dessert courses.
Grab a designated driver and spend the evening on a moving feast through different houses.
The change of scenery provides variety to each course – you can even make everyone switch seating arrangements!
The List Goes On…
Don’t let the weather get you down – winter activities abound!
If you’re still on the hunt, try a spa and sauna day with your girlfriends, start a book club, host a bonfire or s’mores night, soak in a hot tub or nearby hot springs, go to a ski slope (no matter how small!), have friends over for a game night, take a cold weather walk or hike, or plan a murder mystery party.
Being social and spontaneous can help beat those winter blues, so get creative!