Kalahari familyInstead of stressing over the perfect gift, picking out the perfect décor, or planning the perfect menu for the perfect holiday gathering this season, consider the gift of time spent together. People of all ages can enjoy gathering with friends and family to share in the gift of experiences. Whether it is a surprise trip this winter or preparing for a visit this summer, Shores & Islands Ohio makes the perfect present.

Want the gift getaway to start right away? During the colder months, consider a visit to Ghostly Manor Thrill Center for a variety of indoor entertainment all year round or stop at a museum such as Liberty Aviation Museum to learn about the past by seeing historical, operational vehicles and aircraft, and enjoy a meal at the restored 1950s Tin Goose Diner. And, if physical presents are truly a must, visit the museum’s gift shop to commemorate the trip. Tickets and gift certificates could be purchased now as something to unwrap and use later.

Castaway Bay mascotsIf frigid temps have you missing days by the beach or playing in the pool, it’s time to visit one of the indoor water parks of Sandusky. Castaway Bay by Cedar Point Resorts, Great Wolf Lodge, and Kalahari Resorts & Conventions keep the warm, summer feeling in their indoor water playlands no matter the weather. Each resort has its own, unique theme with dining options and other fun activities to make it a truly immersive experience. Plus, look for any deals the parks are offering for visits now and in the future. A plush character representing the resort (each has one or more mascots) makes a great gift for opening paired with a gift card or reservation confirmation.

Maybe you are thinking of multiple visits to the place you Lake Erie Love. Share the joy by gifting season passes or memberships to places like Cedar Point, Lakeside Chautauqua, and Schedel Arboretum and Gardens, or Put-in-Bay via the ferries. By being able to take trip after trip, it will be the gift that keeps on giving! Even if the vacation isn’t until later, Miller Ferry Perry's Memorialconsider looking at attractions to pre-purchase tickets and receive holiday discounts and deals now. The savings can be a bonus present.

For some, it’s hard to grasp the idea of an experience over a physical object to be unwrapped. Or perhaps, you want to add a little surprise that pairs well with the gift you choose to give. Considering shopping local for Lake Erie Love gear, a specialty food or drink item, or other handcrafted items to showcase the best of what Shores & Islands Ohio has to offer and build excitement of what’s to come. Check out the rest of SHORESandISLANDS.com for ideas on local shops, activities, restaurants, and more to make the most of your holiday no matter the season. Also, be sure to follow along with us on social media this festive season as we visit local retailers and show you tons of gift ideas through our “Shop Local” initiative!

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