Local Stores Provide Unique Christmas Gifts

With Christmas just around the corner, parents are scrambling to major retail stores to buy the latest hot toys for their children.

However, parents can choose from more toys than the Big Hugs Elmo and Furby Boom as holiday “must-haves.” Three local stores shared with The Post-Journal their hot items for this season.


Perfect for that nerdy friend or family member, Chautauqua Comics caters to those who enjoy reading comic books, graphic novels or playing popular card games, such as Magic: The Gathering.

“Anything Big Bang Theory is very popular right now,” said Al Steffens, owner of Chautauqua Comics. “Not only that but Batman and Spider-Man are still very popular still.”

Steffens said people tend to buy loved ones graphic novels, and anything with The Walking Dead basks in high demand. Mostly though, he said, people come in looking for collectibles.

Chautauqua Comics carries: a 17-inch talking Sheldon Cooper figure; Walking Dead glasses, figurines and graphic novels; and Pop Figures of characters from shows and movies. Magic: The Gathering will be coming out with a holiday gift box, and HeroClix feature popular heroes where players can compete against each other in a strategy game similar in nature to Dungeons and Dragons.

Chautauqua Comics also makes shopping for others a bit easier with their Comic Book Registry where comic book fans walk around and mark what they are looking for inside the store, and later friends and family can shop from that list.

Chautauqua Comics can be found online at www.chautauquacomics.com and is located at 214 Fairmount Ave.


A boutique shop located in Lakewood, Christa’s carries nice, higher-end, items. They carry all sorts of different appeal, including holiday gifts for children.

The most popular one by far comes in the form of “Elf on the Shelf,” a special elf scout sent from the North Pole by Santa Claus who perches on a different shelf each morning.

“He checks out everything you do,” said Mary Stineman, the shop keeper at Christa’s. “The things you forgot and the things you do well, so he can report it back to Santa.”

Christa’s also carries Mr. Christmas music boxes and Mark Roberts fairies.

Christa’s can be found at 104 Chautauqua Ave. in Lakewood and is open 10:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday.


Tina’s Hallmark, a traditional Hallmark card and gift shop in the Chautauqua Mall, can be found in 14 different locations across Western New York and northwestern Pennsylvania.

Tina’s carries various different things which children will enjoy, such as Loom Band Bracelets, interactive plush animals which respond when read to, stuffies and the Santa Signal.

“It’s an ornament for kids,” said Kristy Adams, manager at Tina’s Hallmark in the mall. “The top sends a light out to let Santa know where they are.”

Tina’s Hallmark also carries a book for people to record their voice reading aloud and give as a gift, and Elf on the Shelf.

Tina’s Hallmark can be found at 318 E. Fairmount Ave in Lakewood. Store hours are Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.