Holiday shopping suggestions

Be honest: As you brace for heavy traffic, packed parking lots, and teeming throngs of humanity around shopping malls across the country, how many times have you thought, “There’s got to be a better way”?

Here in Tulsa, there is. We are richly blessed with mom-and-pop businesses that sell good products at fair prices, and when you do business with them, more of your money stays right here in Oklahoma — which is good for all of us.

Here are a few ideas to help you bring a little joy to your loved ones while avoiding the madness of Black Friday at the big-box stores. Feel free to add your own favorites in the comments; this list is just here to get you started:

1. The Gadget Company, 104 E. 15th St. As its name suggests, The Gadget Company carries all sorts of outdoor gadgets for campers, hikers, and fishers. You can also find a few books, gag gifts, and unusual tchotchkes to delight outdoorsmen and people who have everything.

2. Steve’s Sundry Books and Magazines, 2612 S. Harvard Ave. From bestsellers to local authors, Steve’s has something for every reader. Bonus: You can grab lunch at the old-fashioned soda fountain in the back of the store.

3. Ida Red, 3336 S. Peoria Ave. Well-stocked with local, recycled, fair-trade, and socially conscious items, Ida Red is a great place to find stocking stuffers (old-fashioned candy, anyone?) and Tulsa-themed accessories and gifts. TOMS shoes, lullaby versions of your favorite rock songs, and our personal favorite, Leon Russell merchandise, are all available at Ida Red.

4. Dwelling Spaces, 119 S. Detroit Ave. Another awesome source for local gifts, T-shirts, music, and oddities. It’s also just down the street from Lyon’s Indian Store, another great source of unique gifts. Feed the meter a couple of hours’ worth of quarters and enjoy a laid-back Black Friday in the Blue Dome District.

5. Kiddlestix, 3815 S. Harvard Ave. One of the best toy stores anywhere, Kiddlestix carries everything from science projects to craft kits to old-fashioned ride-on toys. Bonus: They offer free gift-wrapping — a great timesaver, and a good way to keep the kids from seeing their presents before you have a chance to wrap them.

6. The Campbell Hotel and Spa Maxx, 2636 E. 11th St. Surely you didn’t think we could resist a little shameless self-promotion here, did you? When you get to the end of the day, come unwind with a drink at The Campbell Lounge and round out your shopping by picking up Spa Maxx gift certificates or treating a special couple to a night in our gorgeous Renaissance Suite. While you’re at it, book yourself a massage at Spa Maxx. You deserve it after a long day of shopping. If you want to book in advance, call (918) 744-5500 and make an appointment right away.

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