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It's this time of year again. The holiday season’s frenzy is approaching, which means that companies are loading their best prices, and Mariah Carey’s Christmas album has come to life. Although some people turn to online shopping or shopping malls, we recommend keeping them locally and visiting these Summit and Stark County stores.
Jenks 1929 If you are at a loss for the gift-giving idea, please put everything down and go to Jenks 1929. Owners Michael and Jodie Oates Owen gave this 92-year-old auto machinery factory new life by opening retail stores, art galleries, weekly entertainers, libraries, cafes, wine cellars and even bakery. Jenks 1929 provides quality heirloom gifts such as Pendleton blankets, Opinel knives, wooden toys, wine baskets and classic books. "We want to give a gift that will be passed down from generation to generation," Michael Oates-Owen said. 1884 Front St., Cuyahoga Falls, 234-312-9103, jenks1929.com
Speculum Gifts and Gallery The Speculum that opened in July is a one-stop shop for art, with artworks ranging from US$20 to US$500. Located in the heart of Cuyahoga Falls, the gallery exhibits the work of more than 30 local artists, specializing in glass, ceramics, wood, stone, metal and jewelry. Owner Rachel Forbes attributes the gallery’s success to the closely connected community. "We are not Amazon," Forbes said. "We are passionate and care about each other." 2140 Front St., Cuyahoga Falls, 234-718-3640, lookingglassgiftsandgallery.com
Don Drumm Studio and Gallery To commemorate its 50th anniversary, sculptor Don Drumm and his daughter Leandra will re-release their popular aluminum designs and tin decorations, including Santa Claus, reindeer, wreaths and candle holders. "We are proud to provide unique handmade gifts at affordable prices," said marketer Jessie Raynor. 437 Crouse St., Akron, 330-253-6268, dondrummstudios.com
The Social Dept. Clothing Co. If you are looking for a gift that makes Cleveland scream, look no further. Since 2006, Andy and Christy Taray have been providing hand-screened T-shirts, household items and poster prints. If all the shopping makes you thirsty, then there is more good news. The Ministry of Social Affairs worked with HiHO Brewing Co. to provide bundles for customers to buy T-shirts and then go to the next door for free beer. "Technically speaking, everyone can find something that suits them," Taray said. 1707 Front St., Cuyahoga Falls, 330-573-7911
Gwendolyn Elizabeth Gwendolyn Elizabeth Carson and her mother Lisa Carson attach great importance to self-care, but they also believe in small batch production of bath and body products to ensure quality. Starting from Black Friday, this store will provide special offers, including a $19.95 gift basket and a four-in-one bath bomb. But the best sellers are always Christmas soap biscuits. "I put them in a cookie jar," Carson said. "It looks like you are giving someone a box of biscuits, but it is actually soap." 126 W Streetsboro, Hudson, 330-342-9137, gwendolynelizabeth.com
Laura of Pembroke is off your shopping list in a stylish way this holiday season. Laura, owned by the Pembroke family, is a three-generation retail boutique that offers a variety of choices for people of all ages. This year’s holiday products will include popular knitted winter hats and handmade photo frames. "We try to get unique items every year," said shop owner Lauren Bosworth. 3119 Whippie Ave. NW, Canton, 330-477-4455, lauraofpembroke.com
Trot for the turkeys in Cleveland this Thanksgiving weekend, weave wreaths and take off in a sleigh.
Come for the huge light-up ceremony on opening night, and take part in the celebrations in downtown Cleveland on November 27 and beyond.
Whether you are showing off your fans or preparing for Thanksgiving, there are many exciting competitions to participate in this month.