By Shelby Clark
With Black Friday and Cyber Monday approaching, nationwide retailers are dominating the shopping scene. But Michigan offers a variety of stellar gift options for every demographic imaginable – all here in the metro-Detroit area!
A good ride
Remember waking up on Christmas morning to a shiny new bike? A bicycle you couldn’t wait to ride … until April? Now, metro Detroiters can support local business, both Michigan and American. Wheelhouse Detroit Bike Shop and Detroit Bikes are collaborating to launch a bicycle retailer in Eastern Market, opening Nov. 26. Offering quality, American-made products, many of which are made right here in Detroit, the Eastern Market spot will offer “Detroit Bikes A-Type,” a commuter bicycle designed to be lightweight and durable. The bikes range from $550-$700. For more information, visit the retail residency in Eastern Market, 2934 Russell St., Detroit, or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
Nothing says “Christmas” like some booze. With Ferndale’s own Valentine Distilling Co. the fragrance of juniper is right there, in the gin. Interested in other libations? The spirits at Valentine are all made locally and include a variety of choices, ranging from their classic Valentine vodka to their more exotic White Blossom Vodka. Gin and whiskey are also available. Valentine products can be found at many local liquor stores, such as A & L Wine Castle in Ann Arbor, and at the distillery itself, 161 Vester Ave., Ferndale. For more information on the product, visit http://www.valentinevodka.com or call 248-629-9951.
Screenprinted on clothing made in America, local company Common Threads Clothing sells T-shirts, hats and posters featuring metro Detroit. For that person who’s proud of their Detroit roots, check out the Detroit Spirit Baseball T. To order the Detroit pride shirt, visit http://www.ctcdetroit.bigcartel.com.
Art for the kid at heart
Regardless of the county you live in, it’s completely free to enter the Detroit Institute of Arts to shop. Not just a place to buy art prints, the DIA museum shop houses unique toys, jewelry, collectibles and more. In honor of the “Watch Me Move: The Animation Show” exhibit, the DIA shop will offer various cartoon-inspired goods, including books, DVDs and collectibles of characters from Disney, Pixar, Marvel, DC, Tim Burton films, Futarama, and more. Museum members always receive 10 percent off in the store. The DIA is located at 5200 Woodward Ave., Detroit. For more information, visit http://www.dia.org or call the gift shop at 313-833-7948.
A paw-some idea
Sure, Spot and Fido might “appreciate” the elf costume they have to wear every year, but there are different ways to support four-legged loved ones. The Michigan Humane Society is offering holiday cards featuring three local animals who found homes – a dog named Prince and two kittens, Sterling and Veronica. Fifteen 5-inch-by-7-inch cards are available for $12.95 at all MHS locations (Rochester Hills, Westland and Sterling Heights) or online at http://www.shopmichiganhumane.org. Each purchase helps support MHS. Don’t worry about disappointing Sparky – MHS also offers a variety of merchandise for both pet and owner.
Gingerbread and fruitcakes are some goodies most people look forward to once December rolls around, and Avalon International Bread company is sure to satisfy the holiday craving for sweets. Avalon offers a variety of baked goods made with 100-percent organic flour and a strong use of local ingredients. Friends and family will be beyond pleased to receive a culinary gift of vegan cookies, sticky buns, brioche and more. The bakery currently has two locations in Detroit: 422 W. Willis and 799. W. Grand Blvd. A third location will be opening at 4731 Bellevue soon. For more information, visit http://www.avalonbreads.net.
A well-intentioned donation in someone’s name is an incredibly memorable gift. This holiday season, support a local organization. For more information on making a charitable gift in honor of someone this December, check out who you can support in the Pride Source Yellow Pages.
It’s beginning to look a lot like … a clean car
Spa gift certificates aren’t limited to pedicures and facials. Motor City Auto Spa in Royal Oak offers various treatments for cars, ranging from exterior detailing to paint touch ups, fabric protection to floor mat steam cleaning, and window tinting and glass repair. Protect a loved one’s car this winter with a gift to the body shop, located at 901 W. 11 Mile Road. Visit http://www.motorcityautospa.com or call 248-AUTOSPA for information on services and pricing.
Maybe your gay pal is into designer briefs? Or how about some porn DVDs? Five15 Media, Magic and More in Royal Oak carries food items, novelties, books, magazines and clothing. Even coffee mugs to insult the Joe-obsessed. Is your loved one up for going out? Try gifting a friend or family member with a night of Drag Queen Bingo at the store; held every Friday and Saturday, with Sunday brunches, one of the resident drag queens hosts a night of bingo, prizes and debauchery. Check out Five15 at 515 S. Washington Ave. or visit http://www.five15.net.
Interested in more local goods this holiday season? Check out BTL’s yellow pages, where hundreds of local vendors advertise their goods and services.