If Oprah Winfrey can get publicity with her annual Favorite Things list and Beth can get some play out of HER Favorite Things list, then why not me?

My items are totally different than the ones chosen by the two famous ladies. By the way, if you're wondering about their celebrity couple nickname, it would have to be either Opreth or Bethra. Anyway, here's MY list of Favorite CNY Christmas Gifts, in no particular order:

1. See tomorrow's NHL ice hockey stars in action today. Put a smile on someone's face with seats to a single game or season tickets for the Utica Comets and the shot to meet Audie (pictured above) up close and personal. And throw in a gift certificate to enjoy at the Comets AHL shop inside the newly remodeled Adirondack Bank Center at the Utica Aud.

2. An Empire Pass (below) for parking/admission to any and all of the great New York State Parks. There are all sorts of options for annual, 3-year and 5-year passes. And, last we checked on the New York State Parks website, a LIFETIME pass is only $750.

NY State Empire Pass
Credit: Dave Coombs/TSM via ny.parks.gov


3. A gift certificate to one of the Top Nail Salons For Central New York Men, as highlighted earlier this year on this very website. And the salons on this list happen to be great for women, too.

4. Curling. Not the kind you get a salon, but the chance to try your hand at an official Olympic sport right here in Utica with a membership to the Utica Curling Club. Maybe there's a gold medal in your future.

Curling - Winter Olympics Day 14
Getty Images


5. How about a boat tour or cruise along the famous Erie Canal? The docks and ticket office for Erie Canal Cruises are located in Herkimer at the Waterfront Grille.

6. A combination of two legendary Utica institutions--Meyda Custom Lighting and Utica Club Beer--would make one great gift. Take the beautiful glass designs created at Meyda in Yorkville and combine that with UC beer into a beautiful, decorative stained-glass panel. Here's a deal for one available through Amazon Prime:

Meyda Tiffany Utica Club
Dave Coombs/TSM via Amazon

Those are just the ideas that came to me right off the top of my head. I hope my loved ones don't read this blog post, because I've got some of their gifts from this list, already purchased and wrapped. If you have any other ideas, I'd love to hear about 'em.


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