Whether you are 10 years sober or in the second phase of alcohol withdrawal, filling your nights and weekends with social activities that do not involve drinking can be tough. Perhaps your friends like watching sporting events at the bar while enjoying a drink, but they forget how challenging this type of atmosphere can be for a recovering alcoholic. You don’t want to put yourself in an environment full of relapse triggers. At the same time, you probably don’t feel like missing out completely on the weekend nightlife.
If you can relate to this dilemma, we have good news. There are plenty of ways to have a good time without drinking alcohol. You might even be surprised by some of the unconventional social activities that are available in your area. Here’s a list of unusual ways to have fun with friends while staying sober.
Attend a Secret Concert
Music lovers can use Sofar Sounds to find live music played in small, intimate settings in their area. This global network of artists, hosts, and guests makes it easy to find new music in 340 cities around the world.
Simply create a profile, search your city for live music events, and apply to attend a show (or shows). Requesting tickets puts your name into a draw. If you are selected from the draw, you will be able to purchase up to three tickets for the show you applied for.
Artists and venues remain a secret until one day before your selected date. Because Sofar concerts are usually hosted in private homes or small event spaces, there is typically no bar on site. However, these events are often BYOB, so come prepared with non-alcoholic beverages.
Solve a Mystery in an Escape Room
Escape rooms are fun, interactive games taking place in cities and towns across the U.S. To start, you are placed in a themed room of your choosing. These rooms function as interactive mystery puzzles, which you are allotted 60 minutes to solve. Then, working together with the other members of your group, you must find hidden objects, figure out clues, and solve puzzles to earn your freedom.
You can make individual reservations, or book a mystery room for you and 8-10 friends. To maintain their family-friendly environment, most (if not all) escape rooms prohibit alcohol.
Practice Aerial Yoga
As an essential part of addiction recovery and relapse prevention, exercise helps rebuild neurotransmitter systems that have become unbalanced as a result of alcohol abuse. But climbing a stair master or running on a treadmill at the gym is probably not your idea of a fun Friday night. That’s ok! How about trying a less conventional form of exercise that allows you to have a good time with friends, burn calories, increase endorphin levels, and hang upside down?
Aerial yoga is a new twist on traditional yoga that combines yoga poses, Pilates, and dance with the use of silk hammocks suspended a short distance from the ground. It’s a great way to have fun improving your body, mind, and soul without involving any alcohol.
Participate in a Cooking or Baking Class
Spend your Saturday night learning how to prepare the perfect soufflé or mastering essential buttercream piping techniques. Cooking and baking classes are fantastic group activities that can be enjoyed without drinking. Before signing up, just be sure to check the class menu or contact the instructor to ensure no alcohol will be served during your event.
Prices for group cooking classes range anywhere from $40 to over $100 per person. If you’d like to save a few bucks, consider hosting your own class and splitting the cost with friends. There are thousands of free cooking and baking tutorials to choose from online.
Additional Non-Drinking Social Activities
Living sober does not mean giving up your social life completely. But it does mean creating a social environment that is conducive to long-term recovery. Here are a few more alcohol-free activities to help you maintain a healthy balance of social support and sobriety.
- Painting pottery
- Climbing at an indoor rock gym
- Playing paint ball or laser tag
- Visiting a trampoline park
- Going on a hike
- Taking a bike ride
- Renting canoes or kayaks
- Playing mini golf
Addiction counselors at The Shores Treatment and Recovery help clients create a game plan for their successful transition back into everyday life after inpatient care. If you or a loved one are seeking help for an addiction, but you’re worried about relapsing after treatment, please contact The Shores today. We have an extensive aftercare program in place to help you achieve long-term sobriety.