Take everything you think you know about romance and toss it out the frosted February window.

Cuddling up in front of a warm fire? Candlelight dinner and a movie? It's all been done before.

It's time for romance to get cool.

So head out to AvalancheXpress, part of the Heritage Hills Golf Resort in York Township.

"It's a perfect spot for an out-of-the- box date," said Melissa Beaverson, director of marketing at Heritage Hills Golf Resort. "It's for a couple that is a bit tired of the regular date night."

If you haven't been snow tubing, you've missed out.

Here's what you need to know:


If you or your date think open-toed shoes or sandals are appropriate, you've got the wrong idea of what snow tubing is.

Caroline Wille, 16, and her boyfriend Ausin  Harrison, 16, both of Balitmore, get warm by a fire at Avalanche Xpress in York Township on Saturday.
Caroline Wille, 16, and her boyfriend Ausin Harrison, 16, both of Balitmore, get warm by a fire at Avalanche Xpress in York Township on Saturday. (FLIPSIDE -- KATE PENN)

In case you didn't notice, snow tubing is a winter sport that takes place on snow, so wear warm clothes. No need for skimpy or revealing outfits.

Gloves are pretty much necessary, or your fingertips will be numb after your first ride down the hill. A hat is worth bringing along.

Boots are OK, but sneakers can work - if you double up on the socks.

The wait

Well, it doesn't have to be. Depending upon how busy AvalancheXpress is, you will probably have to wait a bit before going down the hill.

It's not a long wait, just a couple of minutes.

Use that time for the most important part of your date: talking with your significant other.

Can't think of anything to talk about? Snow tubing and the people around you will give you something to discuss. Someone on the hill always has an eccentric hat.

Or talk about what you're going to do afterward. Are you going to check out Knickers Pub or Ironwoods Restaurant? Both are at Heritage Hills, so they fit in naturally with the date.


Snow tubing isn't the only activity at AvalancheXpress.

You can also try ice skating.

This takes a slightly different skill set than snow tubing. You don't get to sit down and you have to use balance.

That said, it's also a lot of fun, good exercise and can be part of a great date.

Skating tickets are $8 on the weekend and $6 during the week, but combo tickets with snow tubing are available. Skate rentals are $3.

Now, about those traditional romantic ideas: Chocolate's still a good thing.

- Patrick Abdalla,
FlipSide Staff

More cold activities

York City Ice Arena

Where: 941 Vander Ave., York.

When: Free-skate hours during the weekend are from 7:30 to 9:30 p.m. Friday; 1 to 3:45 p.m. and 7:30 to 9:30 p.m. Saturday and 1:45 to 3:45 p.m. Sunday

Cost: $6.50 for admission, $2.50 for rentals

Online: yorkskate.com

Roundtop Mountain Resort

Where: 925 Roundtop Road in Warrington Township

Details: The resort has skiing, snow tubing, winter sports and a restaurant, the Fireside Bar & Grill

Online: www.skiroundtop.com

If you go

What AvalancheXpress

Where: 2700 Mount Rose Ave., York Township

Hours: 4 to 10 p.m. Monday to Thursday

4 to 11 p.m. Friday

9 a.m. to 11 p.m. Saturday

10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Sunday

Cost: Rates change depending on ages, times.

Details: avalanchexpress.com