What do you buy for the very first guy in your life? No pressure, but he deserves something spectacular that pairs well with his interests and personality. Whether he’s adventurous, loves to eat, enjoys reading or is always up on the latest tech trends, we have the perfect present to surprise your dad with this year — all locally made or sourced.
For the dad who loves red meat
Burger tour of Buffalo
Plenty of men appreciate the finer things in life, but when it comes down to it, most seem equally satisfied by a truly good burger. Create a burger tour of Buffalo with a collection gift certificates to the best spots in town: $10 or $20 gift certificates to each place will do the trick!
- Juicy Burger Bar, 1 Buffalo St., Hamburg
- Vizzi’s, 967 Kenmore Ave., Kenmore
- Grovers Bar & Grill, 9160 Transit Road, East Amherst
- Allen Burger Venture, 175 Allen St., Buffalo
- Roost, 1502 Niagara St., Buffalo
- Griffon Gastropub – locations in East Aurora, Williamsville and Niagara Falls
For the dad who needs a tech upgrade
The Seal Tablet
A tablet that’s locally manufactured? Oh yes. It’ll cost a bit more than a necktie, but the Seal Tablet is a great option for dad — especially if he’s on the rough-and-tumble side. The water-resistant, dustproof and drop-resistant tablet is made in Buffalo by socially conscious Bak USA, founded by Danish immigrants in 2015. The company’s vision is to make mobile technologies accessible to every human being on earth – while empowering underserved local communities – so you can feel extra good about your purchase.
Available at: Microsoft Store, Walden Galleria or at Bakusa.com; $699-$979
For the reader (who loves beer)
Buffalo Beer: The History of Brewing in the Nickel City
It’s no secret that Buffalonians adore their craft beer. But the area’s brew culture is steeped in a colorful past, and a historian and brewer join forces to tell the tale in this book. Not only is this a gift your dad will love, you’ll also support two native Buffalonian authors: Michael F. Rizzo (known for his writing career, preservation work, speaking engagements, and as owner of Naked Buffalo Tours) and Ethan Andrew Cox (avid brewer and president of Community Beer Works).
Available at: Talking Leaves Bookstore, 951 Elmwood Ave, Buffalo; $19.99
For sports-loving (and hating) dads
Buffalo Braves T-shirt and “What it’s like to be a Buffalo Sports Fan” Coloring Book
Does dad still mourn the loss of the Buffalo Braves basketball franchise? Honor his ’70s memories with this T-shirt, while appealing to his sense of humor with author Greg Bauch’s hilarious take on the agonies of being a Buffalo sports fan. Don’t forget the colored pencils!
Available at: Store716.com
Shirt: $19.95. Coloring book: $12.95
For nerdy dads
Lessons at the American Force Academy
Dad a Star Wars fan? At the American Force Academy, he can learn martial arts while incorporating fighting techniques like Western fencing, Asian weapon arts and European longsword fighting. The studio starts off with a wooden weapon that can later be replaced with — yes — a custom lightsaber.
$80 per month for classes and $80-$800 for a custom lightsaber
525 Wheatfield St, North Tonawanda
For thrill-seeking dads
Whirlpool Jet Boat Tour
If dad loves adventure and the water, a jet boat ride may be the perfect bonding experience for you both. The high-speed boat takes you up the Niagara River, from calm waters towards class 5 rapids, so prepare for a wet ride. (The front row can be a little intense, but as you head towards the back, you won’t get hit as hard.) Register in advance and plan to arrive 45 minutes before your scheduled ride – and be sure to bring a change of clothes and a towel. Make a day of it with hot dogs and fries at the Silo, a charming waterfront spot in Lewiston a short walk away.
115 S Water St, Lewiston
Adults: $63; Children 12 and under: $45