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Unique Holiday Shopping Ideas

Tuesday Nov 16th, 2021

We’ve all heard the news that trying to purchase some gifts this season may or may not arrive in time for the holidays.  Nation-wide shortages on all sorts of goods, toys, clothes and electronics have people looking for alternatives.  All the more reason to SHOP LOCAL.  Our area is loaded with AWESOME locally-owned businesses that sell all sorts of unique gifts you can’t find in traditional name brand stores.  Many offer online shopping and even delivery as added incentives.  


  • It’s great for our community/economic growth
  • It instills pride in our area
  • Personalized customer service beats talking to an automated system and
  • Most importantly you’re showing support for someone who had a dream about starting a business and is seeing it thrive because of people like you!

Get our FREE Erie Shopping Guide complete with locator map.  Click here to download.

As you’re checking off your shopping to-do list, remember there’s a whole slew of local businesses out there that could use your support; especially during the holiday season. (pictured above: Epiphany's Emporium)

Here are a few of our favorites:   


action toy man 3

Actiontoyman – From the outside this seemingly small corner store is very unassuming but step inside and WOW! BAM! POW! You will be floored by their THREE FLOORS of action figures, comics and collectibles from the 1960’s to today.  Every nook and cranny of Actiontoyman is packed with colorful creatures, games and just plain good-old fashioned whimsical items that bring out the kid in all of us.  Open Thursday – Saturday 10 am – 5 pm and Sunday 11 am – 5 pm. 

Nature’s Noel at Asbury Woods – This holiday season the Center’s Squeaky Frog is transforming into Nature’s Noel! Featuring over 16 local makers and artisans, Asbury Woods’ Squeaky Frog Gift Shop will extend into the lobby of the Nature Center, showcasing holiday and nature-themed gifts from local artisans. From November 19 through December 31, shop Nature’s Noel Monday through Saturday from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm and Sundays from 12:00 – 4:00 pm. Beginning December 1, Nature’s Noel will also be open during Winter Wonderland, with additional hours of 5:30 – 8:30 pm. More information and details on featured artisans can be found here.

Nature Noel 2
Asbury Woods Nature's Noel

Hagen History Center Carriage House: Take local history home! The Carriage House Gift Shop located on the Hagen History Center Campus (356 West 6th Street) has glittery baubles and history inspired gifts! Did you know that you don’t need to purchase museum admission to shop? How cool is that?! Open Tuesday-Saturday 10 am-5 pm and Sunday 12 pm-5 pm.

Carriage House Gift Shop
Hagen History Center Carriage Gift House

Grape Discovery Center – Sample, Sip and Shop! Where else can you enjoy a glass of wine while you shop? The Center offers selections from Lake Erie Wine Country’s wineries with tastings available daily. The gift shop offers a large selection of unique grape-themed and non-grape related gift items such as Amish toys, games and rugs, salsas and jams, stained glass window art, collectible Welch’s glasses, jewelry, candy, and more.  Puzzled about stocking stuffers?  How about grape flavored popcorn, gummy bears, or grape lip balm? There is also a supply of grape pie filling for your holiday baking, with some items available for sampling.  Customized gift baskets are offered but must be ordered by December 18 (which is also their last day of the season).  Open Thursday, Friday or Saturday from 11:00 am to 5:00 pm.

Grape Discovery Center

Harley Davidson of Erie Apparel – It’s not just motorcycles at our local HD store.  Their expansive merchandise department features the area’s largest selection of HD clothing, boots, helmets and accessories.  It’s definitely worth the ride to check them out! Open Tuesday-Friday 10 am – 6 pm and Saturdays 10 am – 4 pm. 

Harley Davidson clothing
Harley Davidson of Erie

Epiphany’s Emporium & Painted Finch Gallery – Take the short drive down Historic PA Route 6 to beautiful downtown Corry PA and you will find these two gems waiting for you.  Epiphany’s features colorful art supplies, craft sodas, shaker boxes, hand bags, hand-tooled leather goods, pillows & rugs, rocks and minerals.  The Painted Finch Gallery is a place for talented local and regional artists to showcase their art. Their artists vary from oil, acrylic, and watercolor paintings to hand carved sculptures and handcrafted jewelry. Both stores are open Monday – Saturday 10 am – 5 pm and Sundays Noon- 4 pm.

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Painted Finch Gallery

Partner Spotlight

dobbins landing

Dobbins Landing

Located on the southeast shore of Lake Erie, the Port of Erie has been promoting industrial, commercial, and recreational opportunities on the waters of Lake Erie since 1959.

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u pick 6 spotlight

U Pick 6 Craft Beer Pubs & Restaurants

Erie’s own local craft beer pubs are a must-visit! With 4 great locations, just pick one that’s convenient for you! A casual, family friendly dining experience with something for everyone! To view our menu, check out what’s on tap, or get to directions to our pubs, learn more now!”

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bayfront grille

Outdoor Dining at the Bayfront Grille

The Bayfront Grille Restaurant at the Sheraton Erie Bayfront Hotel is excited to announce that our Bayside Patio is open for Lunch and Dinner. Please check Open Table for reservations or contact the restaurant directly at 814-454-2005.

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Make memories all year at Port Farms!

Bring your family to Port Farms this summer, fall and winter! Port Farms is a fun-filled family destination located in Waterford, PA (30 minutes outside of Erie). The farm features many activities for all ages including a NEW Flower Festival, animal exhibits, slides, pedal carts, wagon rides, 8-acre corn maze, jumping pillows, pumpkin picking, Christmas tree picking, visiting with Santa, and much more. Options for wedding venues, corporate events, birthday parties, and school field trips are also available. To learn more, purchase tickets, or book an event visit

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John Russell Brewing Company Brew House & Restaurant

Local Craft Beer Brewery & Pub in Erie, PA! Featuring a large selection of craft beers, a wood-fired brick oven featuring fresh dough specialty pizzas & our open-view brewing environment makes for a unique experience! Reservations // Call 814.866.BEER (2337)
:: Full Menu, Wood-fired Brick Oven & Casual Pub Dining
:: Brewery & Craft Beer Pub
:: Craft Beers on Tap & Beer To-Go
:: Indoor & Outdoor Dining & Bar
:: Online Ordering & Takeout
:: Beer To-Go
:: Conveniently located of I-90 on Peach Street

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the cork

The Cork 1794

The Cork 1794 is the perfect spot for a date night or special occasion! Indoor and outside seating available with amazing food.

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spotlgiht the cove

The Cove Bay-Side Restaurant & Tavern

Join us today! The Cove Bay-Side Restaurant & Tavern is sure to give you an unforgettable and care-free dining experience. Enjoy a nautical atmosphere with a beautiful view of Presque Isle Bay.

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erie reginal chambers

Erie Regional Chamber and Growth Partnership

The Erie Regional Chamber is leading Erie’s economic evolution through awareness, advocacy, and access to the people, education, and information integral to elevating regional success and economic growth. Become a member today and join us in championing a vibrant and sustainable regional economy.

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UPMC Hamot - See What Makes Us Different

UPMC Hamot is a 423-bed hospital in Erie, PA, offering a full complement of inpatient and outpatient services, and serves as a regional referral hub and Level II Trauma Center.

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millcreek mall

Millcreek Mall

The Millcreek Mall features more than 160 stores, restaurants, and fun for the whole family on Upper Peach Street, Erie’s most popular shopping district! Shopping in Erie means no sales tax on clothing or shoes. Choose from a variety of hotels located on the Mall property and just minutes away at the intersection of Peach Street and Interstate 90.

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When you have an opportunity to fly, give Erie a try - support your hometown airport!

Direct Daily Flights to Charlotte and Chicago.
Erie International Airport is serviced by American Airlines and United Airlines with daily flights to Charlotte and Chicago with connections across the country and around the world. Book your flight today at or

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partner mazza vineyards

Mazza Vineyards and the South Shore Wine Company

Local wine is great for holiday entertaining, plus it makes a great gift! Stop by to try (and pick up) award-winning wines at Mazza Vineyards and the historic South Shore Wine Company, both located in North East, PA.

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