Estimated reading time: 5-6 minutes
Dates are hard. But if Rihanna can find love in a hopeless place, you can find love in the Beehive State, a place that’s not at all hopeless. Sure, she’s got the whole billionaire superstar thing going for her, but you’ve got a lot of qualities, too.
The question is: where can you show those qualities and meet like-minded singles in Utah? Here are a few places you might be able to meet people with similar values, goals, and hobbies — and who’ll be willing to endure your uncle’s political tirade over Thanksgiving dinner.
Let’s start with the inevitable: the often frustrating but necessary dating apps.
In terms of the sheer size of the dating pool, the big apps (Tinder, Bumble, Hinge, etc.) can hardly be surpassed. But while more people to choose from can mean more dates, it can also mean a lower chance of compatibility, especially when online profiles are reduced to a few pictures and a brief written description. Add to that the fact that chemistry is hard to gauge virtually, and it’s easy to see why online matches don’t always result in real matches.
That being said, many have found what they are looking for through dating apps. To increase your chances of success, there are a few steps you can take to attract the audience you’re attracted to. First, you want to be on the right app(s) – not all are born equal. Some are more niche and may give you a better chance of finding someone to talk to (like Mutual for Latter-day Saints or Our Time for seniors). You also want to show your best side with your profile: add flattering but authentic photos and a concise description that shows even more who you are.
groups and clubs
The best way to find someone who likes the same things as you is to join a group or club made for enthusiasts of those things.
Are you into photography? Register for an upcoming event or class hosted by Pictureline. Do you enjoy exploring the mountains? Join a local hiking group. (In addition to the social benefits, it’s also safer — and more motivating — to hike with others.) Want to get into pottery? Check out adult education courses at your local university or community college.
One of the best options for finding groups covering just about any hobby or interest you can think of is Meetup.com. You can even find groups and events geared towards individuals.
The best part about being part of a club is that even if it doesn’t lead to romantic encounters, you do fulfilling things and make friends. In fact, that should be your mentality: join these groups to do activities you enjoy, and if something extra comes of it, it’s just a bonus.
Athletic competitions are great for many things, but can make it difficult to mingle since you’re trying to win. Also, the prospect of intense competition is simply not fun for many.
Enter Beehive Sports, a club that organizes coed sports leagues focused more on socializing than crushing opposition. (To be clear, league tiers are labeled “social” and “supersocial.”) From softball to soccer to cornhole, Beehive has something for everyone. And if none of your friends are interested in joining a kickball league this fall, you can register as a free agent and join an existing team. Besides, your friends are fools. Kickball is a lot of fun.
The fun with Beehive doesn’t stop at sports ball either. Several bars, including Campfire Lounge, Gracie’s and Twist, sponsor the club and offer discounts to players on match days, making them perfect after-game hangouts.
Yes… the bar
The bar scene is a bit cliche when it comes to meeting people, but there’s a reason. Many singles who go to bars on weekends to socialize are more laid-back than normal and open to conversations with strangers. One caveat is that some bars can get pretty noisy, but you can usually at least start a chat there. Even if you don’t drink, it can still be a good time to be with others, and almost all bars have soft drinks to choose from.
Note: Not everyone who is in a bar wants to meet new people. This shouldn’t need to be said, but if someone shows no interest in speaking to you, don’t persist. Or take it personally. Some people just want to have a good time with their friends.
If you want to let your hair down and groove to some tunes, there are several locations around the Wasatch Front that you could try. Salt Lake City’s Westerner is a great option if you want to kick off your cowboy boots and dance to the best country hits. For those in the Utah County area, Grove Station in Pleasant Grove hosts country dancing on Tuesday nights.
If country isn’t your thing, spice things up with salsa dancing in Provo. You get a free lesson upon entry – and you don’t need to bring a partner! Come alone or with friends and meet new people.
The most important
The most important thing when trying to meet new people is to be yourself — more specifically, to be the best version of yourself. Look good, be confident, and show others what’s great about you. But always remain authentic. Pretending to love rock climbing or having a posh British accent can only lead to disastrous results.