Every year many Americans flock to mega stores like some sort of high-speed pilgrimage. As a result, stampedes and violent altercations have become synonymous with the holidays themselves. The name “Black Friday” evokes chills down the spine that run deeper than the frigid winter itself.

Avoid the frantic shoppers and corporate products to support those closest to you. Give your loved ones the gift of New Mexico’s best. Here are some gift ideas that reflect the best our beautiful state has to offer, while also supporting the local culture.

Red or green? Corn or flour?



One of the greatest things about the Land of Enchantment is the food. It could be green/red chile, corn/flour tortillas, tamales, salsa, beef jerky, and the list goes on. Every single one of these things is made in our own backyard and sold by local people. Whether it’s Sadie’s salsa, Frontier tortillas or Hatch green chile, keep your well-spent money within state lines this year while filling your family’s bellies with goodness. Hey, if you’re lucky, maybe they’ll even share.

Local beer

A more recent trend in the United States is local beer. This enterprise is flourishing particularly well in New Mexico, gaining national attention with places like La Cumbre, Marble, Santa Fe and Boxing Bear. These breweries, among others, offer a variety of hops made in the 505 for your palette’s pleasure. Also to that end, they provide some of the best gift ideas for those that are 21 or older. Whether it’s with gift cards, growlers or other merchandise, treat those you care about with some homegrown suds, while letting our local brew masters do what they do best.

Southwestern jewelry

The Southwest is known for its Native American jewelry, and New Mexico has some of the very best. Before the big day, stop by one of the many reservations in the state and get some beautiful turquoise, silver, beadwork, or clay art or jewelry. These things can be truly one-of-a-kind — things that anyone can appreciate, including the local artists who have made it their livelihood.

Don’t have the time to travel far out of town? Hop on over to Flea Market Weekends at EXPO New Mexico. It’s going on every Saturday and Sunday at 7 a.m. on the corner of Central and Louisiana. When you do your shopping, take the path less traveled and get something your relatives won’t see anywhere else.

Snowboarding equipment/passes

‘Tis the season for many to flock to the mountain and, when it comes to gift ideas, there are options aplenty in New Mexico. Depending on how generous you are feeling, you can go big or not. To really show love, buy season passes to one of the many ski areas in New Mexico: Taos, Santa Fe, Pajarito, Angel Fire or one of the others. If you want to leave the mountain choice up to them, buy them the gear to get there, from many different outlets in Albuquerque.

Tight for cash, but still want to help someone get to powder paradise? Many ski areas sell weekend passes and, of course, single-day tickets. Not only are you helping the local economy, but you are giving someone the ability to get outside and do some good physical exercise. What’s there to lose?

Mathew Reisen is a news reporter for the Daily Lobo. He can be reached at news@dailylobo.com.