7 heartwarming ways to celebrate Galentine’s Day, from a distance
It’s that time of year again. V-day is just around the corner, but so is its clear superior, the many-fabled G-day. I’m talking ‘bout Galentine’s Day, an important occasion first planted in our collective consciousness just 11 years ago when Leslie Knope, eternal Parks and Rec royalty, decided she wanted to show her girlfriends love by throwing an annual Galentine’s Day brunch on February 13th. As is to be expected, she subjects them to her signature shenanigans: everyone is forced to participate in hilariously uncomfortable rounds of storytelling and feeling-sharing over waffles and mimosas. Although many women saw fit to celebrate love and friendship among girlfriends in place of, or in addition to Valentine’s Day long before Leslie ever existed, the occasion—with its official name and all—has been celebrated by gals all over the globe ever since she coined it.
If you’re stoked for Galentine’s but are feeling like it’s bound to be a rainy day parade, what with the pandemic and all, know that there are ways of celebrating in a socially distant fashion that will still leave you feeling all warm and fuzzy inside. The silver lining to a year spent connecting with peeps over Zoom is that we’ve gotten the hang of this way of communicating to such an extent that online gatherings can be just as joyous and intimate as those hosted in person. If you’re skeptical, I get you. But how about a little inspiration to get this G-day rollin’? Here, I offer you a bevy of virtual Galentine's Day party ideas to stoke both your creativity and your enthusiasm, ‘cause really, how better to overshadow V-day in 2021?
1. Have a theme
I realize themes are not for the faint of heart, but consider having one, such as goth G-day, (with costumes), or lingerie modeling(!). Or, you could centre your party around a common task, comparing the cute cupcakes you made the night before. Or, you might even split the cost of hiring a pro to teach a private class via video conferencing (i.e. baking, dancing, yoga, knitting, etc.). Harrowing as it may seem to do a group class via screen, it’s easier than you think, and it’ll be hilarious, to say the least. Fest Cooking and Liquid Lab offer some great virtual classes.
2. Reclaim the usual tropes
Whether or not you have a partner you're celebrating that other holiday with, G-Day is ripe for reclaiming all those tired, worn-out romantic tropes: I’m talkin’ about that little black dress, that bottle of bubbly, those red roses and those heart-shaped boxes of chocolate. You might even order out from some fancy restaurant (in advance, of course). You and your gurls deserve that shit, even if some of you celebrate V-day in similar ways. I say, bust it all out, because how better to chat about your love life (or lack thereof) than with chocolate, champagne, and your lady friends? Worst date go-around, anyone?
Music is key to any good-vibin’ celebration. Set the mood right by picking/curating a soundtrack that your friends are sure to love, and play it in the background throughout your G-Day date night. You might choose all girl-power artists for the fun of it, y’know, like Lizzo, Beyonce, Lady Gaga, Solange, Sza, or whatever you’ve got up your sleeve. Or—you could base your list on tunes with special or sentimental meaning to your friends. You know ‘em best.
You can do a Galentine’s day or a night, baby. Consider organizing a traditional Knope G-Day brunch, complete with that late morning booze. You might share a waffle recipe with your friends in advance of the day (don’t forget that whipped cream on top!), and/or plan to pre-make delicious cocktails so that by the time your call starts, you’re all set and ready to make a toast before you chow down.
5. Gift exchange
Who says it’s just for Xmas? Why not do a secret gift exchange? You might use an online gift exchange generator to assign each of your friends the person they’ll be gifting. Be sure to set a price limit to keep things somewhat sane. For extra-extra convenience, everyone can order gifts online and have them shipped directly to each person’s house. The more in advance the better, obviously. Then, over Zoom, you might make a game of it by guessing who gifted who.
6. Movie night
Choose an appropriate flick (whether it’s traditionally for chicks or for dicks) and organize a collective watching session. My all-over-the-place top picks: Mississippi Masala, The Secretary, Bridesmaids, and The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants. You can always opt for a slasher movie too, depending on the collective mood. Afterwards, you can chat about it, have drinks, and/or move onto any of the other grand G-Day ideas on this list.
7. Trivia night
What’s not to like about trivia night? Personally, the only ones I’ve taken part in have been in the pubs of yesteryear, but why not do it virtually? Bar None Trivia offers tons of online trivia party options—even a Galentine’s themed one! Just sayin’. Best of all, they can create a trivia event based on the interests of any specific group of friends. Within the game, there’s even the option to have smaller breakout groups if y’all wanna collaborate on your answers.
Bottom line: how you celebrate is up to the interests of your own, highly specific, wonderful, and unique group of friends. Make it sexy, make it angry, make it sappy. Galentine’s Day is your oyster, so make of it what you will. Oyster night, anyone?
To happy sappy hippy drippy all-original gals the world over: one love.