Blind Date: Can Nick and Sara climb their way out of the friend zone?

Blind Date: Can Nick and Sara climb their way out of the friend zone?
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Our Blind Date series is proudly presented by Emerson Joseph, Charlotte’s premier men’s grooming lounge in Uptown. Get date-ready with a haircut, straight-razor shave and shoe shine.

How does Blind Date work? Charlotteans fill out this 41-question Agenda Blind Date Survey about their make-or-breaks, their ideal types and their perfect dates. Then the Agenda plays matchmaker by sending couples out on blind dates. Below are the results. Want the chance to get matched? Fill out the survey!

Welcome to the Agenda’s Blind Date series.

This is the latest in a multi-part Blind Date series in which I match single Charlotteans of all ages. If you’d like to be considered for an upcoming date, fill out our survey. Pro tip: we’ve tweaked the survey a bit, so if you applied a while ago, please re-apply!

Here’s how it works: Applicants sent me a few details on things like their views on politics, favorite hobbies, and marriage. They then trust me to send them on a true blind date.

Those selected don’t know anything about their date except the essentials – name, age, and a few things that I thought would make them a good match. They don’t even get to see a picture.

After carefully sifting through the applicants, I paired two together and set up a date I thought they’d enjoy.

Meet Nick and Sara.

Nick is a 24-year-old account executive who’s been in Charlotte for a year and a half. He’s originally from Syracuse, NY. (Editor’s note: So am I!) Nick loves going to sporting events and breweries, and cites Slate, Ri Ra, and Jeff’s Bucket Shop as a few of his favorite haunts. He describes himself as “a great friend who is kind and outgoing.”

Then there’s Sara. Like Nick, she’s also 24 and has New York roots. She works in corporate operations. She loves the Whitewater Center, sporting events, brewery hopping, trying new places, and taking her dog out and about. Her best friend would describe her as “spunky and spontaneous, caring and creative, and never afraid to take on an adventure.”

Why are they a good match?

– They’re both energetic people who are down to try new things
– They cite a love for the same Queen City activities
– They both have New York ties
When asked about their ideal first date, Nick and Sara each indicated that they’d like it to include an active component.

I decided that Inner Peaks Climbing Center in South End would be a good fit.

But, of course, the rest of the night was up to them. After all was said and done, I chatted with them individually to see how it was. Here’s a picture of the two of them all harnessed up and ready to go:

How do you feel about the dating scene in Charlotte?

Nick: I feel like the dating in Charlotte gets a bad rap, but it’s pretty similar to dating scenes anywhere. It’s all about if you’re willing to step out of your comfort zone and go on dates. There’s nothing different about Charlotte than D.C. or Atlanta or any city. There are restaurants and Inner Peaks places and fun things, you’ve got to just go for it.

Sara: I think it’s difficult with all of the dating apps. I feel like there are two groups of people, there are the people that have been dating for years that are getting married at our age and the group of people that still think they’re in college and aren’t ready to settle down at all.

How did you feel leading up to the date?

Nick: I was a little bit anxious, just because this was something I’d never normally do and I never expected to get selected when I filled out the survey. Not nervous, necessarily, just interested to see how it was going to go.

Sara: I was more nervous about the fact that this was going to be published online, but as far as meeting him I wasn’t nervous really at all, just because I can pretty much talk to anybody.

What was your first impression?

Nick: She was super outgoing, which is big for me because sometimes if someone’s super shy I can out-talk them all night, but she was right there with me. We had a lot in common being from the same area, so we had a lot to talk about immediately. She’s a fun person. I felt like the conversation flowed easily between the two of us. 

Sara: He was super funny and really down to try new things. Climbing was not his forte, but he was so excited to try it regardless, and he had a great attitude towards it.

Was there chemistry?

Nick: I’m so terrible at immediately telling if there’s romantic chemistry or not. We were both laughing a lot throughout it. I got her number. I don’t know if there will be a second date or not, I would be willing to go on one. I don’t know if the romantic connection was necessarily there immediately, but I wouldn’t say that it couldn’t be there either. I feel like we would be really good friends, and I’m not limiting it at that. But that’s really what it was. It was like two friends going out, which was great. 

Sara: At first we were just kind of talking back and forth and we were both really giggly and happy to be there. We were both really excited that we got chosen. There was chemistry in the fact that we got along really well and we laughed a lot and he was very funny. I was very comfortable around him. He’s super easy to talk to. I’m not sure if there’s an initial “wow!” connection, but we could definitely get along and hold a conversation.

Will there be a second date?

Nick: There wasn’t an immediate, strong romantic connection that took over from the get-go, but it could blossom into something. We also know a few of the same people, and I could see her group of friends and my group of friends getting along great.

Sara: We could definitely hang out. We have a couple of mutual friends and are from the same place in New York (he grew up where my sister went to college) so we have a lot in common and it was really easy to connect on some things. We’re very similar people, so yeah, I would definitely hang out with him again. We could definitely hang out in a group next time or we talked about even going back to Inner Peaks. We could definitely hang out again, I’m just not sure if it would be a total date thing.

How did you leave it?

Nick: I got her number and texted her and thanked her for coming and she sent me some of the pictures we had taken from the night. We kind of left it open.

Sara: We ended up texting later. I sent him some of the pictures from the night and we were laughing about them.

Overall, how would you rate the date on a scale of 1-5?

Nick: I’d give it a 4-4.5.

Sara: I’d give it a 4.

Responses have been lightly edited for length and clarity. If you’d like to be considered for our Blind Date series, fill out our survey here. 

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