Although it can be tempting to complete your holiday shopping entirely online these days, shopping locally helps out small businesses and will almost certainly lead you to finding gifts you’d never have considered. Keene happens to have a wide arrangement of shops to stop by this holiday season where you’re sure to find something for everyone.

When it comes to local stores, Hannah Grimes Marketplace is a great place to start. They carry a variety of crafts, art, drinks, and snacks made by local companies and artisans. From New Hampshire maple syrup to beautiful pottery made by artists in the area, Hannah Grimes is a prime location for gifts.

If you want to save money by buying used items, you can check out Good Fortune Jewelry and Pawn on Main Street or take a stroll down Emerald Street to visit Puggy’s and browse their extensive collection of antiques and collectibles.

For used kitchenware, games, and multitudes of miscellaneous items at a highly discounted price, be sure to stop into More Than a Thrift Store on Ralston Street, where an ever-changing selection ensures that you never know what you might find.

If sweets are your go-to gift, Main Street is where you should head. Life is Sweet is the destination for all things candy and cupcake, and Ye Goodie Shop carries high-quality chocolates.

Just off Main Street lies the Monadnock Food Co-Op, where you can pick up some healthier fruit-based sweets, as well as premium chocolate bars and a wide selection of ethically sourced and organic snacks and treats.

Are you buying gifts for someone with interests deeply rooted in pop culture this holiday? If so, check out Bull Moose in the West Street Shopping Plaza. Bull Moose is the hub for all things entertainment; they boast a massive collection of DVDs, books, records, CDs, and video games, carrying just about any title you can think of. They also carry board games, card games and roleplaying games (RPGs), as well as trading cards, collectibles, and gifts.

Although Bull Moose has comics, you can try Enterprize Comics, Etc. on Key Road for a more diverse collection of comics and graphic novels, action figures, trading cards and tabletop RPGs.

If Bull Moose and Enterprize Comics can satisfy literature fans in terms of sci-f and fantasy, then The Toadstool Bookstore on Emerald Street has every other base covered. Toadstool carries all the books you could ever need to keep the readers in your life happy.

Maybe this year you’re shopping for someone with more niche interests, or you’re just out of ideas and want to explore your options- -either way, Soul Emporium and Shadow Emporium on Main Street could be where you need to go. Shadow Emporium is an occult themed store that carries everything from tarot cards to spell kits, as well as an extensive assortment of tea, and plenty of miscellaneous gifts related to the supernatural. Its sister store, Soul Emporium, specializes in good vibes, with crystals, puzzles, socks, jewelry, stickers, pins, and incense being just a taste of what you will find inside.

While shopping at large international companies and online can be the easier route, Keene’s small businesses host an assortment of gifts that can appeal to any interest, so this holiday season take a stroll downtown and see what you can find.

Gabe Schatz can be contacted at

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