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How sweet is that?
Get an awesome gift for your Valentine

02/09/12
By Kelly Sennott ksennott@hippopress.com



There’s sweet — candies, heart-warming gestures and innocent kisses — and then there’s sweeeeeeet!

A sweet ride, a sweet deal, a sweet new gadget or a sweet success.

Not everyone embraces pink lace or syrupy confections, but everyone knows sweeeeet. If your significant other is more of a sports nut than a sweet tooth or more of a rugged individualist than a romantic swooner, fear not, there’s still a place for you on Valentine’s Day.
Peter Hoose of Manchester thinks men, in particular, shouldn’t ask for anything — it’s not really a guy’s holiday, he said.

“I think the day should be a way for guys to show how much they care, and it’s a time for them to do things for their girlfriends,” Hoose said. Sounds good — of course, it works if the girls want to do things for their boyfriends, too.

Geoffrey Berron of Hooksett no doubt was speaking for many when he said what he’d really like this Valentine’s Day is a massage. Professional massage gift certificates can be purchased at health centers and spas all over New Hampshire. The Holistic Self Care Center (12 Murphy Drive, Nashua, 883-1490), Soulful Touch Massage Therapy (33 N. Main St., Concord, 674-0345) and Massage Therapy Plus (33 N. Main St., Suite 4, 401-7940) are just a few options.

If your significant other is an outdoor enthusiast, a nighttime hike date could be nice. A little in advance of the official holiday, Beaver Brook Nature Center is hosting a Valentine’s snowshoe hike for couples on Friday, Feb. 10, from 7 to 9 p.m. The event costs $25 per couple and features an evening walk through the “peace and quiet of the snowy forest” on snowshoes. BBA educator Kap Siddall will lead the adventure, which will conclude with a bonfire, warm beverages and dessert. Registration is required; call 465-7787.

For the person who loves sports almost as much as he or she loves you, get a Patriots or Bruins jersey, a Red Sox cap or a Celtics headband, a Fisher Cats Fungo T-shirt or a Manchester Monarchs mug. Make a gift of game tickets and make it a date. Check out www.monarchshockey.com and www.nhfishercats.com for local tickets and gear that says “I love you enough to get you what you really want.”

If you’re giving to a gadget geek, your choices are practically limitless. Though many tech nerds will already have the latest iPod, camera or headphones, not everyone will have all the cool accessories for these toys. Get your valentine a sweet docking station, arm band or case for a smartphone or MP3 player. Then get yourself an “I (heart) my geek” T-shirt from ThinkGeek.com (available in women’s and men’s sizes, $16.99 to $19.99) and wear it proudly on your date to the nearest wifi hotspot.

April Harton of Barrington likes homemade gifts more than store-bought presents because they’re gifts that come from the heart.

“One year, I really wanted a hedgehog, and while my boyfriend couldn’t afford a live hedgehog, he got me a hedgehog stuffed animal,” Harton said. In other words, be creative. Presents that involve writing songs (for musicians), photo albums and homemade cards all show someone you care.

If you want to go the food-and-drink route, consider www.amazingclubs.com, where you can sign your beloved up for the Cheese of the Month Club, the Beer of the Month Club, and all manner of other of-the-month clubs in three-, six- or 12-month durations. There’s one for coffee, one for barbecue sauce, and even one for bacon. For the most selective foodies, the Cacao Connoisseur’s Club at Dancing Lion Chocolate in Manchester (625-4043, dancinglion.us) is a high-end option: each month, the recipient gets an artfully wrapped bar of dark chocolate, usually made with specialized beans from a single plantation; six months costs $75. And of course, a nice night out at your Valentine’s favorite local restaurant is always a good gift.

Speaking of nights out, movie tickets can be a sweet gift for the cinephile. How about gift certificates for the latest IMAX action movie at Cinemagic in Hooksett or Manchester (cinemagicmovies.com)? Or for the artsy type, a membership to Red River Theatres in Concord (redrivertheatres.org), which means discounts, free birthday admission, special offers and members-only events.

Mike Abrams of Bedford suggests that the way to a man’s heart is through his pet. Don’t buy anything for him, he said: “Get me a nice bone for my Maltese dog!” For those who have thought about it and are ready to adopt (experts advise against impulse-buying pets as gifts), the Greater Derry Humane Society (19A Manchester Road, Derry) will be hosting a dog adoption day on Saturday, Feb. 18, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., with dogs currently fostered in GDHS homes present for adoption. The Concord-Merrimack County SPCA will also be hosting a pet adoption day on Saturday, Feb. 18, from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Concord Petco (35 Fort Eddy Road).






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