Financial planner Bette Lynn Paez told me about a Valentine's Day party she and a bunch of single friends once threw. Every guest on the list had to a) be single, and b) bring along an unattached friend of the opposite sex.
To get conversations started, all of the attendees wore labels noting the last movie they'd seen or the location of their last vacation. I thought, wow, what a brilliant idea. Talk about taking a crappy Hallmark holiday and making it work for you.