Candy, puzzles, gear and masks: A short list of NC-based merchants you can shop from this holiday season.
Yes, Christmas is just a few days away. And for those needing to scramble to get some gifts under the tree, here are a few suggestions of ways to show some NC love while shopping for loved ones.
Many of these spots ship, but it is unlikely they’ll get there before the 25th. But in a year like 2020, a gift will be more than welcome, no matter when it arrives.
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Red Bird candies
These signature puffed mints have been churned out at the Piedmont Candy Company in Lexington since 1890. I speak from experience. It’s hard to eat just one.
You can pick up a bag at many grocery or retail stores, or order online through the website of the Candy Factory, an old-time candy store in Lexington offering plenty of the hometown treats for sale. Or pick a bag up at most grocery stores in the state. Go for a tin of the traditional peppermint puff, or the more adventurous can branch out with a tin of assorted flavors. The big-time Red Bird fans can also buy in bulk.
Shape of the State
We’ve all been spending a lot of time indoors this year to try and slow the spread of COVID-19, and puzzles have had a newfound renaissance. Get your loved ones a taste of North Carolina with these 500-to-1,000-piece puzzles offered at Our State magazine’s online store, all of which were made right here in the state by the family-owned Heritage Puzzle in Pfafftown.
Rep your Charlotte Pride
If you’ve got loved ones with love for the Queen City, the 704 Shop has got you covered. This shop started by three former UNC-Charlotte roommates has everything from some flashy Charlotte track jackets ($115), CLT beanies ($35) to masks with various nods to NC’s biggest city.
If you need another incentive, these local business owners took the altogether decent step of closing their flagship SouthEnd Charlotte shop for in-store stopping in early December — the busiest retail time of the year — to protect their staff and customers from a resurgent coronavirus.
“Obviously this is a decision we have not taken lightly as the next few weeks are typically the busiest time of the entire year for us, especially for in-store shopping and our bottom line,” co-founder Jerri Shepherd wrote on Facebook. “However, given the sharp rises in Covid-19 cases and our deep passion for our staff, we refuse to put profit over our people. Furthermore, we care too much for our community to put more people at risk, regardless of what it means for us as business.”
Safety with Stocking Stuffers
If there’s one thing that we’ve learned in 2020, it’s that we really can’t have enough masks. While vaccines are starting to roll out, most of NC is still going to need to mask up well into 2021.
That’s where Hecho en Carolina can help, with its assortment of masks (rainbows! cats! flowers!). Started by Randolph County immigrant textile workers, Hecho en Carolina (or Made in Carolina, a riff off of the Hecho en Mexico logo that adorns products made in that country) was formed requests from the Guilford County Association of Educators for masks that would be comfortable for teachers needing to wear them all day.
The group is now offering its $12 masks to the public through its website. The masks are made by textile worker members of Siembra NC, a grassroots deportation defense and labor organization group in NC.
Pick some up to keep those you love safe!
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