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Picnic with a Twist

Duration: 4 hours
Budget: $30

With comfy blankets, delicious snacks and a game of chess to stimulate conversation and camaraderie, this date idea is perfect for couples wanting to enjoy each other’s company amidst the beauty of Moscow's parks. As the colors of the leaves change, it creates a beautiful backdrop for a memorable d…

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  • After buying your favorite snacks and a portable chess set, you head to one of Moscow's charming parks. You find a peaceful spot amongst the falling leaves, where you can lay down your blanket for a picnic.
  • Just sitting, chatting, and enjoying a meal outdoors can be very refreshing, but to make the date different, a chessboard is set up in the middle of your picnic layout. It becomes a friendly match, where you both show off your strategic thinking. It's not just a battle on a game board, it's a fun way to engage in a different type of conversation and learn something new about each other.
  • As the day wraps up, you lay back on the blanket looking up at the trees and the sky, discussing the game, laughing about the unfair checkmate one of you managed to pull off, the taste of the sandwich you brought, or the weirdly shaped cloud passing above.

Preparation steps:

  • You will want to check the weather for the day of your date. In September, Moscow can have some rainy days, so it’s good to have a backup plan if needed. Pre-buy picnic foods and drinks, but also consider making some of your own, it adds a personal touch. Get a picnic blanket, a portable chess set, and a bag or basket for carrying.
  • Next is selecting and exploring the park, each one offering its unique charm. Gorky Park, Sokolniki Park, and Kolomenskoe Park are well-visited. A good tip is to Google photographs of the parks, to see where you might find the best spot for your picnic.
  • The chess set doesn't need to be anything fancy. If you don't own one already, there are many affordable sets available online.

Some tips:

  • Don’t forget to dress in layers, September weather can change quickly. Pack plenty of food and drinks, it’s better to have too much than too little. A small pillow could add extra comfort for sitting on the ground.
  • If you or your partner doesn't know how to play chess, there are plenty of online resources, and learning can be a fun part of the date. Don't stress it, it's just a game!
  • Finally, handy items to include in your picnic bag: wet wipes (you'd be surprised how useful!), a trash bag to keep your space clean and bug spray (especially if you're by any water).

Recommended locations:

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