Skip to main content

holiday shopping

Hi, I’m Megan. I do Marketing and Communications here at Visit CoMo and I’m also a Columbia native!  I love traveling, the Mizzou Tigers, live music, ice cream, my cats and a good nap. I’m also lucky enough to get to promote my hometown every day. There are so many different ways to enjoy Columbia and each month I’ll be bringing you some of my favorites. Let’s go!


I don’t mean to brag (yes I do), but I finished holiday shopping before Thanksgiving. I also wrapped all of my presents last weekend…I hardly know who I am anymore. But there’s no doubt that before the holidays pass, there will come a moment when I realize that there’s someone I forgot – a last minute gift that needs giving. I’m guessing the same might happen to you, too. Sure, you could go with an old standby like a candle or a picture frame or socks, but what about something uniquely Columbia for that person who has everything? Here are a few different fun ideas that will definitely get a sincere thank you!

Get Locked Up

If the person you’re gifting is into puzzles and intrigue, Columbia is home to three different escape rooms! These fun facilities give you and your group an hour to escape from rooms themed in all sorts of ways, including Pirate Adventure, Double Agent and Mark Twain Museum. These rooms are a great group activity and perfect for the competitive friend or family member. I know I’m still mad I didn’t escape from Double Agent and it has been months.

Kick Off a Resolution

Have a friend who’s a health nut or someone who’s going to get back in shape in 2017? Help them reach their goals with a gift certificate to Nourish or Main Squeeze Natural Foods Café. Both spots serve up delicious food that will probably make them forget how healthy it is. On a cold day, the Buddha Bowl from Main Squeeze really hits the spot.

A New Night Out

Always head to the same spot for date night? This year, try out something new in CoMo. We’re hearing great things about Barred Owl Butcher and Table, which serves up a variety of sandwiches, small plates and charcuterie, or Flyover, which is home to a wood-fired oven. Both have a great cocktail menu and a focus on seasonal, local ingredients. You may just find a new favorite.

Plan for some Festive Fun

Roots and Blues and BBQ 2017 tickets available.

Give your recipient something to really look forward to by purchasing their passes to next year’s True/False Film Fest or Roots ‘n Blues ‘n BBQ Festival. Both events promise an incredible Columbia weekend for the film or music enthusiast. I pretty much plan my life around True/False and Roots ‘n Blues is my fall oasis, so these passes are a can’t-miss gift.

Winter Warmies

Photo from opens in a new windowRoute Facebook

It seems that winter has finally arrived here in CoMo…it even snowed yesterday! This means that bundling up must now commence. One of my favorite places to get hats, gloves and scarves is Route in the District. They specialize in fair-trade, handmade goods, and their winter accessories are so warm and comfy that it almost makes it ok when you have to go outside. Need a gift for someone who never puts their phone down (like me)? Get them a pair of glove/mittens. The wool gloves leave the fingertips exposed but you can also fold a mitten cover over before you lose feeling in them. It’s a win-win.

For the Beer Snob

Everyone has a beer snob in their life. On the negative side, they make fun of you for drinking your light beer. On the positive side, you can always hit up the Craft Beer Cellar and have them a gift in no time. Their super friendly staff will help you pick out the perfect variety that will make your friend forget (at least for a few minutes) that you don’t know the difference between porter and a stout, and that makes a better holiday for everyone.

Smelly Goodness

makes scents

Three of my family members (who will not be named here because it’s not Christmas yet) will be getting goodies from Makes Scents. They have high-end skin care items, Butter nail polish (stocking stuffers!), holiday soaps, custom-scented items and my favorite candles in the whole world (Seeking Balance, if you’re shopping for me. I’m just saying). The staff will also put together an awesome gift set for anyone doing that last minute shopping…I know you’re out there.

Now that you’re down to only 20 shopping days until Christmas, I know you can feel the time crunch. Hopefully when you feel like you’ve run out of ideas, these will help jump start your shopping list and check even those picky people off your gift list. You can thank me with candles.

Continue reading...