Students show South Orange some love for Valentine’s Day

With Valentine’s Day approaching, many couples at Seton Hall are looking for local things to do. Students can choose to take the train to New York City, but with its abundance of restaurants and activities, there are plenty of options if students choose to visit South Orange village. These student-friendly spots are affordable and offer romantic atmospheres for couples celebrating on Feb. 14 or even on Feb. 13 for a Galentine’s Day celebration.

Bowtie Cinemas at SOPAC is a popular date night spot for SHU couples.
Kiera Alexander/Asst. Photography Editor

South Orange Performing Arts Center Movie Theater
Daniella Coffaro, a senior biology major, suggests the location of South Orange Performing Arts Center (SOPAC) for a night on the town. “Go to a movie first then dinner so that you can get used to being with the person, then at dinner if there is a lull in the conversation you could always talk about the movie,” she said. Coffaro mentioned that she and her boyfriend recently saw the comedy “Jumanji” at the theater.
Couple David Gluck and Leah Milano noted that they recently saw “The Greatest Showman” at SOPAC. On Tuesdays movies are $6 per ticket for SHU students.
Anthony Trappani, a senior psychology major, also recommends SOPAC for its live shows, which have student discounts. After Valentine’s Day, SOPAC will be presenting “Steel Magnolias” put on by SHU Theatre, which is free for anyone to attend. Though it won’t fall on the day of love, a late celebration on Feb. 22 through 24 at 8 p.m. and 25 at 2 p.m. will make for a cost effective night on the town.

Village Trattoria
Village Trattoria, or as many SHU students call “The Trat,” attracts many Seton Hall couples looking for a night out. Nick Hession, a sophomore computer science major, and his girlfriend McKinley Brock, a sophomore modern languages major, frequent the pizzeria. “Trat is just a really good pizza place with a nice atmosphere,” Hession said. The Trat doesn’t just have pizza; it has a menu you can consult for other Italian favorites, such as pasta or calamari.
Couple Melanie Weir, a senior creative writing and theater major and musical theatre minor, and William Moore, a junior accounting, IT management and philosophy major, added, “The staff is always really nice and the food is so good.” Weir noted that she “loves their vodka sauce” and that her and Moore once “went [to the Trat] before a movie and filled up so much on bread that they didn’t need to buy popcorn.”

Burgers Grilled Right
Burgers Grilled Right (BGR) is a popular destination for SHU students due to the fact that it is alumni run. According to Mark Uriarte, a senior computer science major, the restaurant has “good burgers, a nice ambiance, and has 10 percent off for SHU students all the time.” At BGR you have the option to build your own burger or order a specialty burger from their menu. They have milkshakes, which would be perfect to share and side orders such as French fries or onion rings to choose from that are super shareable. This location is perfect for couples who love a classic burger. There are also a few vegetarian options that will satisfy those who are not fans of meat.

Giorgio’s Ristorante
Anna Carpenter, a junior music and theatre performance major, stated that her and boyfriend Brendan Kane discovered this restaurant, located by the post office. “Not a lot of people know its there but it’s honestly one of our favorite places downtown,” Carpenter said. While one could be sold on this dining spot simply by the twinkling lights and the good food, Carpenter and Kane have a different aspect they appreciate…the atmosphere. “Giorgio’s is definitely a fancier place but that’s what we like about it. The couple added, “It’s perfect for a romantic evening.”

Claudia Emanuele can be reached at

Author: Claudia Emanuele

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