Ultimate Local Gift Guide

. December 1, 2017.

Best Gifts
for Kids

Books from local authors
and publishers
Ann Arborites love their books, and Nicola’s loves to stock favorites from regional authors. Look for new picture books from two beloved Michigan authors and illustrators — Patricia Polacco’s Remembering Vera ($17.99) and Philip and Erin Stead’s adaptation of a Mark Twain story, The Purloining of Prince Oleomargarine ($24.99). For early readers, try Dave Coverly’s Night of the Living Worms ($5.99) or his graphic novel Dogs are People, Too ($12.00). Intermediate readers will devour Jonathan Rand’s newest Michigan Chillers Sault Ste. Marie Sea Monsters ($5.99), and YA readers will adore Kristin Bartley Lenz’ The Art of Holding on and Letting Go ($12.95).

Nicola’s Books
2513 Jackson Ave.
734-662-0600 | nicolasbooks.com

BowsHead bows and accessories
Handmade hair accessories for babies, girls, and tweens make lovely stocking stuffers, and Michigan company BowsHead makes bright colored satin and grosgrain hair bows that can clip in hair or get fashioned as a clip-on bow tie for a suit. $10.

My Urban Toddler
3010 Washtenaw Ave. Ste 107
734-585-0788 | myurbantoddler.com

Kahoots Spinograph, Plasticine, Color Forms, and Fashion Plates
This Ann Arbor toy company offers creative toys for aspiring artists and designers. Kids get to imagine, experiment, and make designs of their dreams and proudly cover the fridge in their inspired creations. $12.50 – $34.

Available at Mudpuddles
407 N 5th Ave.


Tee See Tee and Michigan Awesome T-shirts and weatshirts
Available in everything from onesies to adult sizes, this state of Michigan gear is sure to be a hit with bigs and littles alike. With designs featuring all things Michigan, this spirit gear is required wearing for all proud Michiganders. $19.99-54.99.

The Little Seedling
2121 W. Stadium Blvd. | 734-418-2392

Writer’s Sew Shop felt toys
Imaginative play just got more fun with pretend s’mores and campfire set, play food sets, dinosaurs, and other whimsical felt creations. Soft and squishy, these toys are flying off the shelf at this new Ypsilanti store. $12-$36.

Brick and Mortar Modern General Store
21 E Cross St, Ypsilanti | 734-340-2343

Best Gifts for Adults

Pint glasses and home décor
Find an enticing array of stylish kitchen towels, mugs, cozy pillows, and household items to show off your pride for the Mitten, including State of Michigan Pint Glasses ($12) in an assortment of vivid primary colors.

Available at Rock Paper Scissors
216 S Main St. | 734-531-6264

New and used albums
Find albums from your favorite Michigan artists at the shop with the most curated selection in town. Shoppers can find Michigan originals like Bob Seger, White Stripes, Motown artists like Marvin Gaye and Smokey Robinson, and other well-known and obscure regional artists. Prices starting at $1.

Available at Encore Records
417 E Liberty St.
734-662-6776 | encorerecordsa2.com

T-shirts, buttons, and stickers
Pick from a huge assortment of Michigan stickers ($1.99- $3.99), buttons ($1.50), magnets ($2-$3.99) and T-shirts, including a perfectly nostalgic Say Yes to Michigan T-Shirt ($19.99) at The Rocket, one of the best stores in the area for stocking stuffers.

The Rocket Candy and Novelties
122 W Michigan Ave, Ypsilanti,
734-483-2291 | shoptherocket.com

Plants, prints, calendars and scarves
For the nature lover on your list, pick up small house plants, succulents, and fairy garden plants grown on site ($3.50 – $15), Gwen Frostic block print note card packages, calendars, bookmarks, and journals ($.75 – $16.50), and many items by Michigan artists including eco-printed silk scarves ($25.50).

Matthaei Botanical Garden gift shop
1800 N. Dixboro Rd | 734-647-7600

Active Experiences

Looking to give the gift of an experience? Try a gift card to one of these amazing local businesses.

Swim lessons
A month or more of swim lessons at Goldfish Swim School.
$82 per month (plus $25 registration fee that comes with a goody bag).

2017 Holiday Package: $189 for 2 months of swim lessons, annual membership fee, 2 months of free family swim, and exclusive Goldfish apparel!

Goldfish Swim School
2107 W. Stadium Blvd.

Film fanatics
Movies and popcorn at Michigan Theater and the newly renovated State Theater (reopening December 8).
$15 and up

Michigan Theater
603 E. Liberty St.
734-668-8397 | michtheater.org

Baking and cooking classes
Family brownie, pizza, pie, and other classes at Zingerman’s BAKE for ages 7+ and adult classes for breads, pastries, cakes, and more.

Zingerman’s BAKE!
3723 Plaza Dr.
734-761-7255 | bakewithzing.com

Recording time
Book time at Neutral Zone’s Orpheum Recording Studio to record musical performances for applications, program auditions, or fine arts portfolio.

The base package is $200 and includes a three-hour recording session, three hours of editing/video rendering, and one revision.

The Neutral Zone
310 E. Washington

Delicious pizza
Bigalora Cucina offers a delicious menu of cooked from scratch Italian fare and wood-fired pizzas. For dessert try their house made, artisan gelatos!
In December, purchase a gift card over $100 and receive 10% back in a gift card for yourself.

Bigalora Cucina
3050 Washtenaw, Ste. 112

Play Places

Thank goodness there’s an indoor place for kids to explore when it’s cold outside.

Ann Arbor Hands-On Museum
One year membership runs $80-125.
Ann Arbor Hands-On Museum,
220 E. Ann St., 734-995-5439.

Gift certificate (which comes with a punch card that earns one free visit after six admissions).
$8 and up
Kidopolis, 509 State Cir.,

Chelsea Treehouse
Gift certificates and family memberships
$65-130 for 3 months of unlimited visits
Chelsea Treehouse,
1101 S. Main St.,


Don’t Forget Furry Family Members

Paws to Shop
Stop by to get a gift for an animal lover, while helping animals at the same time! Get pet-themed cookie cutters, unique pet toys, and wearables at the HSHV store. Or cat “wine,” an issue of Pussweek, and meowny other novelties at the Tiny Lions Center store! Gift cards are also available. Proceeds benefit our community’s homeless animals at the Humane Society of Huron Valley and Tiny Lions lounge and adoption Center.

Available at Tiny Lions Cat Cafe
5245 Jackson Rd., and Humane Society of Huron Valley

3100 Cherry Hill Rd | hshv.org

  • monique

    Cool! I actually seen some intense baby gift sets and they are also very temping and I got some as a gift to my little angel.