When I was a kid, we had a pretty limited list of items on our Father's Day menu of gifts.
Dad could look forward each year to a new bottle of Old Spice or Aqua Velva, a pack of white short-sleeved Hanes Beefy T's, a box of handkerchiefs, or — wait for it — a new tie.
Fast forward a generation, and my husband and dad have both exhausted a updated list of tried-and-true manly gifts: trail mix, boutique beers, grilling accoutrements, pro-baseball/hockey/basketball tickets.
And they both have so many neckties that they could easily string them together to form a span across the Grand Canyon — twice.
It's time to think outside the (tie) box. Here's a few local and semi-local ideas — plus a handful of dad gifts from the internet:
- Learn 'Knife Skills' — Dad can take courses in Knife Skills, Italian Boot Camp, Wine Tasting and more at Classic Thyme Cooking School. There's also a Kids Cooking School if dad (and mom) need a break! — Westfield
- Recording studio for kids to sing to Dad — Have the kids record Dad’s favorite song, but let's hope it's not "Eye of the Tiger" or anything from LMFAO. — Scotch Plains
- Plant a tree in Dad’s honor — Visit and get Dad a living tribute (or, heck, you just could settle for the 'Take Me Out to the Ballgame' gift basket). — Berkeley Heights
- Let Dad drive an exotic car — Zoom, zoom! Exotic driving experiences start at six laps with a professional driving instructor in the passenger seat providing coaching and feedback. Dad can choose from Porsches, Lamborghinis and Ferraris. Drives start at $169. — Englishtown, NJ
- Tour a local brewery with Dad — Climax Brewery was at the forefront of the microbrewing craze (Dave Hoffmann previously owned The Brewmeister, a homebrew-supply store located in Cranford) and continues to brew some of the best beers around. Call (908) 620-9585 to schedule a tour. – Roselle Park, NJ
Instead of purchasing a present, do you want to make something out of the box for dad?
- Purchase a copy of "Cake Pops: Tips, Tricks, and Recipes for More Than 40 Irresistible Mini Treats" and make dad some delicious cake pops adorned with the logo of his favorite sports team (seriously, it's in the book!).
- Go to the Home Depot website and find out how to build a firepit or outdoor theater (because Dad needs an outdoor firepit to pop popcorn for his outdoor movies!).
And from the Internet (you may need to pay extra for on-time delivery at this point!):
- Personalized golf clubs for dad
- Gadget charger for dad’s car
- Beats headphones to drown out “house noises”
Finally, my personal favorite:
Did we miss a great non-necktie Father's Day gift? Tell us in the comments!
- Thanks to Kathy Pigott for compiling most of this list!