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Think of creative gift ideas from the local area merchants for gifts that will wow and leave area businesses saying thanks!

How about you WOW everyone on your holiday shopping list this year and buy local gifts from the places we know and love right here in the community. Not only will you be keeping your dollars in our local community, but you will also be turning your back on the giant un-feeling corporate machine that is the face-less international big-box conglomerate retailer. Take care of the local places that take such good care of you! Here's an example: How many times have you had a really fun time at the Beggar's Banquet in East Lansing? A ton, right? Well, buy your friend or spouse a kick-butt t-shirt from Beggar's for Christmas! Trust me, it will be well received. Got a music or movie lover on your list? Do them AND your wallet a favor and shop at Flat, Black and Circular in the Campus Town Mall! The place is fantastic for not only deals, but hard-to-find stuff as well. One year, my wife put a bottle of my favorite wing sauce from Buffalo Wild Wings in my Christmas stocking. I was stoked! Next time I grilled some chicken I got to dress it up B-Dub style and I was in heaven! Think of other East Lansing staples that everyone loves, like El Azteco! Did you know you can buy the awesome shirts the staff wears for just like $20?! What an awesome gift for the El Az fan in your life, or better yet, someone you love that used to be able to get El Az and has since moved and now misses it! How much do you love Pinball Pete's in East Lansing? If you're cool, I know you love it a lot! How about a Pinball Pete's gift card and a sweet Pete's T-shirt! That's a gift pack for the gamer, or just the old time EL resident who has fond memories of playing pool and meeting girls in the well-known downstairs campus arcade. Do I have to even mention SBS? Anything and everything Michigan State is available at the Student Book Store, from leather reclining chairs to boxer shorts. If you have Spartan fans on your list, this is a must.

So that's the deal this year! Buy local and make everyone happy - not just the person who gets the gift, but the small local business who sold it to you! Need more ideas? Check the Where to Shop in Lansing section of our website!