Skip to Content

Dating Expert Ashley Kelsch Weighs in on The Perfect Summer Date Night in Austin

From concerts to reservations, dating expert Ashley Kelsch gives tips and tricks to planning the perfect date night in Austin, Texas.

Planning a date night in Austin, where music pulses through its veins and cultural festivities fill the air can oftentimes feel overwhelming. If you’re lucky, you can stumble upon or walk into a promising night of fun, but in today’s Austin, planning ahead is encouraged. Personally, I’ve been sitting down and taking time to scan different venues months in advance and grabbing tickets be it for one — I can’t tell you how much I love taking myself to see a show- or two and asking someone out as the date comes closer. 

I took it upon myself to document these dates and share with my Instagram followers in hopes to inspire new date ideas. Not surprisingly, the conversation almost always circled back to one question:

If you don’t know the person or feel something yet, should you invest this amount of time or share an experience like this with them?

Tribeza’s dating expert Ashley Kelsch. Photo by Cristina Fischer.

My response? It’s your time too, and you should have as much fun as possible with it and them. Why not take a leap on your first date and explore some of the new or nostalgic offerings Austin has? 

For our movie goers you do not want to miss out on the Paramount’s Summer Series. With a wide variety of cinema throwback classics and openers ranging from John Cusack to Robert Rodriguez you are treated to an intimate conversation in the grandeur of Texas’s oldest theater. I’d be remiss if I didn’t give Austin Film Society a mention. I took a date to their screening of Alien that preceded with a live music presentation. Music and a movie is far better than dinner and a movie! By the by, both venues offer Milk Duds, an absolute movie essential. 

Catch the 1943 classic film “Casablanca” at Paramount Theatre this summer.

Carrie Bradshaw famously mused, “In a city full of noise, finding moments of symphonic solace can be like finding a rare gem in a sea of rhinestones.” Let me invite you to discover the Candlelight Symphony. Set in a church with a 5 piece orchestra and hundreds of candles, they play a set list from bands such as Coldplay, Radio, Taylor Swift or Metallica. Only lasting 45 minutes, and somewhat reminiscent of Bridgerton, the experience is soothing and captivating. 

Those seeking to move their bodies and tap into Austin’s pulsing energy I urge you to hit up Barbarella’s 80’s night hosted each Friday. The later you go, the better. The floor is filled with all ages sweating, belting out the lyrics, dancing together. I found it difficult to leave this extravaganza and when I finally did, I was left feeling exhilarated. For a more chill, cozy experience head over to Skylark Lounge. You’ll likely know no-one and can make out in a booth with some Soul and Funk serenading you. 

Photo by September Broadhead.

If you’re willing to go off the beaten path and do what Texans do best, Two Step, then make your way to Sam’s Town Point on a Saturday night. You’ll enter into this honkey tonk heaven and not stop stepping until Ramseys’ band calls it. You and your date can take turns dancing with some of Austin’s best or just take in their steps from the sidelines. Do yourself a favor and don your boots.

MORE: Our Guide to Austin’s Best Karaoke Spots

Get to know Ashley

Not your average dating and sex advice expert, Ash effortlessly combines a sharp wit and observational humor with her bold and unapologetic take on modern relationships. The result? An enticing blend of entertainment and expert advice that will keep you hooked from the first sentence. 

She spent 10 years in the dressing rooms of her lingerie and sexual wellbeing shop Teddies for Bettys in Austin, TX listening to people share their most intimate stories with her. She loved the exchange so much that she decided to make a career move and focus on becoming a dating and relationship coach. While she stays busy dishing out advice, she too had her own stories to make sense of. With a love for writing and storytelling, she started sharing her experience online.

You can find her at, follow her Instagram @ashkelsch.

    Only In Austin