Love is definitely in the air as the biggest date night of the year approaches. Have you locked down your plans for Valentine’s Day? If you’re still deciding on how to treat your sweetheart to something truly special this year, look to these festive activities in and around Downtown Dallas.

Don’t settle for the old Valentine’s Day celebration standby. Instead of making a reservation for a three-course meal at a fancy restaurant, stretch the boundaries of your dining comfort zone by taking a couple’s cooking class. From 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m., Saturday, Feb. 10, Chef Nico Sanchez of Downtown’s TorTaco will introduce you to peppery, smoky Mexican specialties sure to bring a new kind of heat to your kitchen. Even better, since the class will be held at the Dallas Farmers Market (920 S. Harwood St.), you can get all the fresh, locally-sourced ingredients you need for your scratch Valentine’s Day feast as soon as class is dismissed.

Who doesn’t enjoy a good love story? Warm your heart — and tickle your funny bone — at “Stick Together,” presented by Dallas’ innovative arts collective, Oral Fixation. A cast of seven ordinary-yet-extraordinary individuals from D-FW will share their unique tales of companionship, romance and TLC. The show starts at 8 p.m. on Valentine’s Day. Reserve your seat in advance at the newly-christened Moody Performance Hall located in Downtown’s Arts District (2520 Flora St.) for what promises to be a moving and inspiring evening.

It still may be a bit chilly outside, but Valentine’s Day in Dallas still abounds with nature-themed events. For starters, the Texas Discovery Gardens at Fair Park (3601 Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd.) will be marking Feb. 14’s anniversary with their Love is in the Air event. Take a sunset stroll through the Gardens’ magical Butterfly House while expert John Watts reviews the birds and the bees from a purely biological perspective. The price of the ticket includes dinner, drinks and — take heart, entomophobes — a dessert of chocolate-covered insects. Just south of Downtown, the Dallas Zoo (650 South R.L. Thornton Fwy.) will also be marrying science and romance with their Love Birds and Wild Things program, Saturday, Feb. 10. The adventurers who sign up for this adults-only interactive presentation will have a chance to learn about animal reproductive adaptations while sharing a champagne toast. And don’t forget to visit one of our favorite Downtown Dallas parks for an especially affordable Valentine’s Day treat. Klyde Warren Park (2012 Woodall Rodgers Fwy.) and Nissan will be hosting Hearts in the Park on Feb. 10, offering a free, family-friendly afternoon of crafts, dance lessons, sweets and a movie.

Finally, since there’s no better day to indulge in a full-on sugar rush, why not book a Dallas by Chocolate Tour this Valentine’s Day? A basic tour includes five decadent destinations, each featuring its own seductive treats. Drinks and other snacks are provided in the luxury motor coach transporting you from place to place. Just sit back, relax and enjoy the tour’s surprising stops with your special someone.

This Valentine’s Day, fall in love with Downtown Dallas all over again. Share your plans and recommendations with us on Facebook and Twitter. And, from all of us at Parks for Downtown Dallas — Happy Valentine’s Day!