How to Christmas shop for your sportsman

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Christmas shopping for the sportsman in the family need not be difficult or frustrating. After all, he is considered to have everything already but that’s not even close to being true. Every guy needs more.

Even if he’s been less than nice and a whole bunch naughty, he has certain needs and wants and if he’s anything like every other fisherman and hunter, it’s all about the needs, which of course — all wants are soon considered.

Make him sit down and list his needs now. Now because there are only a couple days until Christmas morning.

And now because Santa may find the shelves and the selection less than good. Insist that he describe each item in order of cost, starting from the most expensive to the least costly.

And require the list to include details and sources. Now that you have the list, forget it because nothing on his list is important, nor would it be a surprise. He thinks because it is a once-a-year, gift-giving, cost-is-no-limit event, he can really go wild.

At this point it may be smarter to give the fellow a few gift cards but come on, it is Christmas and we all know that ripping open a package is half of the fun.

Some ideas

So here are a few ideas. A membership in the auto club or a boating insurer so that he is somewhat protected while towing and using his new fishing boat.

You didn’t know about the boat? Well, anyway, the auto club is a great source for travel info, maps, and more. Another thoughtful gift would be an appointment to have his new pickup truck bed coated with an applied bed liner. Be sure to purchase the complete service that includes coating the wheel wells. He didn’t mention the new truck on order?

Let’s move on

Kids with limited funds should read the next suggestion.

Develop a book of coupons that includes such free perks such as car or truck washes, fish cleaning, boat cleaning, leaf raking, garage sweeping, and some really silly, relatively inexpensive things like movie tickets (include one for yourself), a great DVD, CD, and an autographed and framed photo of you and him together.

If he doesn’t think something like this is the best gift ever, he’s a rare dad.

Gift of culture

Ladies, buy him some culture. Dress him up and pre-pay for a date night. Attend a live play at Playhouse Square in Cleveland, include a nice dinner and stay out late, maybe overnight. Too much culture all at once? Then try an overnighter at a Bed and Breakfast in Amish Country or something along those lines.

If he really needs a new fishing rod, shotgun, or GPS, let him buy it himself.

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Mike Tontimonia has been writing weekly columns and magazine features about the outdoors for over 25 years, a career that continues to hold the same excitement for him as it did at the beginning. Mike is a retired educator, a licensed auctioneer and marketing consultant. He lives in Ravenna, Ohio and enjoys spending time at his Carroll County cabin. Mike has hunted and fished in several states and Canada from the Carolinas to Alaska and from Idaho to Delaware. His readers have often commented that the stories about his adventures are about as close to being there as possible. He is past president of the Outdoor Writers of Ohio and a member of the Outdoor Writers Association of America. Mike is also very involved in his community as a school board member and a Rotarian.

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