With the Christmas season already underway, this time of the year is prime time for retailers. Commercials, emails and ads with coupons are just a few of the ways that they want to capture your attention and more importantly, your wallet. Every retailer has the same goal: to entice you to believe that they are the only place to find the perfect gift for that special someone.
Even our bookstore on our campus has started campaigning that they are a one-stop shop for all of your holiday needs.
But maybe an Albion College sweatshirt isn’t exactly what your friends or family wanted. And with the stress of finals and the end of the semester quickly approaching, it’s hard to venture out to shopping malls that can be over 20 miles away. Even if you did have the time, amongst the monotony of national retail stores, finding that unique gift can be hard.
In an attempt to fix this dilemma, I walked around downtown Albion in search of unique gifts for those loved ones who may be hard to buy for. Here are five different options for all of your loved ones in your life.
Cottontail’s Toy Barn
112 N. Superior St.
This store opened up earlier in November after relocating from its Battle Creek location. This move not only benefits its owner, as she is a resident of Albion, but also her customers. All of her products are at discount compared to the prices in Battle Creek. Featuring puzzles from top brands like Melissa and Doug and a do-it-yourself pucker powder station, there are several options to satisfy any child or for those who are a kid at heart.
Hadfield’s Watch Repair Antiques
114 N. Superior St.
This antique shop is bursting with unique collectibles that you won’t be able to find anywhere else. You will find items all over the store, on bookshelves, display cases and even the floor. With antiques ranging from $300 to the very reasonable $20, Hadfield’s features items such as artwork, old sports collectables, and even a globe. And that’s even before you check out their watch collection. The Hadfields, a husband and wife duo, have been in the business of repairing watches for over 10 years and have been selling antiques since their store opening three years ago. Whether you are restoring an old watch or looking for a new one, this is a great place to go.
Books and More
119 N. Superior St.
As their name implies, the local bookstore in Albion has much more to offer besides just your favorite titles, although it certainly has that. This safehaven for booklovers features current titles like The Fault in our Stars, and offers old titles for those who love their classics. Their book collection is both affordable and extensive, allowing you to splurge on more than one. And that’s not all that graces their shelves. They have fun board games and locally made honey, jams, jellies and soaps. While you’re at the store, make sure to grab a cup of coffee. Their lattes and mochas will keep you cozy as you browse through their selections.
It’s New to Me
117 N. Superior St.
It’s New to Me is part consignment, part boutique, and all charm. It features hats, shoes, and clothes worthy of any fashionista’s closet. Along the walls you can find ornate arrangements made by the owner herself. You can purchase a pre-made one or you can order one by request. They also have jewelry that is made by local business in the area. With their unique selection, they also have a table filled with clearance items, but don’t expect them to have prices written on them.Their staff is also willing to work with you to make everything fit with your budget. All of the prices for the items on the table are open for discussion with whoever is on staff so that you walk out of the store with a great deal.
Parks Drug Store
318 S. Superior St.
When thinking “Christmas shopping,” a drug store is probably not what is first to come to mind. You might be surprised to find Parks’ selection spans beyond medicine and candy. Several kinds of Christmas ornaments are available that are both unique and quaint. They also have kitchenware and even large totes that make awesome gifts to mothers, aunts and even grandmothers.
Not only by shopping in downtown Albion will you be taking advantage of gifts you wouldn’t find anywhere else, but you will also be showing your support to local businesses that help make this town what it is. So, before leaving for the end of the semester, take a stroll down South Superior Street. Not only will you be spreading the Christmas spirit, but you also be supporting the city.
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