Tag Archives: Destination

Aerial Adventure Park

This year, we want to get outside our comfort zone. That’s a major driving force for us embarking on this year-of-dating adventure. Normally, you’d expect a bit of a gradual build up to more exotic and extreme dates, but not us. For our second date, we went to an aerial adventure park. We spent the night doing an obstacle course suspended 15 to 20 feet off the ground in between trees. This was also our first double date. Amanda’s brother and his girlfriend came along with us.

Fields of Fire is located in Mystic, CT right off the highway. As we drove near it, we could see the whole place lit up and oh man, did it look cool. They had long strands of lights strung through the different courses for their Friday Night Lights event. The car was buzzing with excitement as we drove by.

Fields of Fire course

The atmosphere of the event was full of chatter and laughter. We signed in when we arrived and soon we were getting harnessed in to do the tutorial. We went over some safety tips and went through a mini course a few feet off the ground. After that, we were ready to take on a course.

There were different levels of difficulty depending on your skill level, yellow being easiest, then green, blue, and finally black as the hardest, each culminating in a zip line finish. We started off on one of the yellow (easiest) courses. It was so cool doing each element (an individual part of the course) while suspended above the ground. We went through about a dozen elements all lit by the lights.

Amanda on an element

Adam on an element

There was a fire pit set up for s’mores and we got some hot chocolate to warm up with. It was coooold out that night. We hardly noticed while doing the course, but once we were finished, the cold got to us. We watched the other couple we were with complete another course while attempting to stay warm. We also got to see some people completing the harder courses, which looked super intense. We also saw a couple people fall on the harder elements, which prompted the staff to go out on the course and rescue them, which was also really interesting. They were hanging from the guide wire that the harness was attached to.


The whole night was so much fun. We’d love to go back. As we returned our harnesses, they told us they would be doing more night climbs in the future, and in different seasons as well. We’ll definitely go again once the weather gets warmer.


A big thanks to Eric for being our photographer for the evening.

Fields of Fire Aerial Adventure Park

First Night

Have you ever heard of First Night?  We hadn’t either, but it was a great first night of dating. The closest First Night to us was Hartford, CT. We ordered our wrist bands last week, but you can also buy them at the event. We found parking (which caused an interesting end to our evening, more on that later) then strolled through downtown Hartford toward the event. Along the way, we passed by an art gallery displaying the “Myths and Idols” collection by Travis Durden, which features Star Wars characters edited in to classic statues. What a great, geeky way to start the evening. A couple blocks later, we arrived in Bushnell Park.

The first thing we saw was the Soldiers and Sailors Memorial Arch.

Soldiers And Sailors Memorial Arch

Unfortunately, we got there right before they were closing the arch for the evening to prepare for the fireworks. One hundred and sixteen feet of hurried stair climbing later, we stood on the arch and took in the view. Five minutes later, after catching our breath for far too little time, back down the tower we went.

Next, we walked around the park looking at the lights and decorations. We found a park bench near the pond and spent a few minutes enjoying the statue in the middle.

The Pond

As we continued strolling through the lit-up park, we passed the carousel. The line to ride was wrapped all around the inside of the building and back out again, so we decided not to ride (yet). Continuing on, we found the Pump House. Inside, they had a roaring fire in the fire place that filled the whole room with warmth and the aroma of crackling logs. In front of the fire place, a couple musicians were playing a variety of Irish and folk songs on acoustic instruments. We got some hot chocolate and spent a while listening and enjoying the ambiance.

Beside the Pump House was a temporary ice skating rink. Frosty the Snowman and Sonar, the mascot for the Hartford Wolf Pack, were skating around with all of the families. Our legs still felt like Jello from climbing the Arch, so we decided to just watch instead of skating. A few minutes later, we heard an announcement that the fireworks were starting soon, so we made our way back over to the Arch to watch the first fireworks display of the evening.

Fireworks over the Arch

The firework display was fantastic. As the different fireworks went off, we talked about the characteristics of each that we liked. At the end, we decided that ones we both like best are the fireworks that leave sparkling trails in the sky like streamers. On the firework test of compatibility, that’s a 100%.

After the fireworks, we saw the line for the carousel was much shorter, so we got in line. It should be noted that “much shorter” is extremely relative. We spent the next hour chatting about the fireworks and the park and cruising, because the horses reminded us of a cruise we took a few months ago that featured carousel horses as decorations. We finally got to ride the horses and it was totally worth the wait. Totally. We enjoyed a short ride, where I pretended to take off my cowboy hat and quietly yelled “Hi-Yo, Silver!” as the carousel made its way around.

We walked around the park a little more, then because it was getting too cold, we decided to head home. We walked back to the exit of the parking garage that we came out of when parked, but it was locked. This set off the great “How do we get to our car?” game of 2015. We first tried all the doors around us, then went around the block to the side of the building, where we tried more doors there. We walked further down the block and found an entrance toward an underground lot, so we walked in thinking that we could get to the car from there. Guess what all the doors were. Did you guess locked? You’re right. Looking around a bit more, we discovered that this was a service entrance for the building, not the parking garage. So, we walked back out and around to the next side of the building. There were a couple more doors, but they didn’t look like they lead to where we wanted to be, so we didn’t even try them. Finally, we rounded the block again and found the entrance to the parking garage we had been looking for. We got to the car, breathed a sigh of relief that we weren’t lost/stranded in downtown Hartford (again… which is a story for another time), then headed home.

We spent the rest of the evening watching a Futurama marathon of all the episodes where Fry gets frozen on New Year’s Eve (Pilot episode, Season 5 episode 8, and Bender’s Big Score), then watched the ball drop.

It was a fantastic date night and a great way to kick off the year. Our New Year’s resolution is to do a new date night every night this year.

What’s your resolution? Have you ever gone to a First Night? Let us know in the comments!

First Night Hartford, CT
Myths and Idols article in the Hartford Courant