Waterloo Region Holiday Gift Guide

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Shop local and show your love for small businesses this holiday season

by Megan Honan | November 2021

This year as the holiday season fast approaches, consider shopping from local makers, creatives and small businesses––so you can feel good while giving back to your community. Share your love of local Waterloo Region businesses with unique gifts you won’t find anywhere else. From a Santa-themed stuffy for your four-legged friend, to a festive food box for the hostess, to a 12 day of Beermas holiday brew pack––there is no shortage of options for supporting your local Waterloo Region community. 

For the Foodie

If there is one thing the Waterloo Region is known for, it’s the world-class food scene that rivals some of the biggest cities. For a taste of farm to table goodness, gift a St. Jacob’s Mennonite Country Food Tour––sampling local cheese, maple syrup, sausage and even a local beer tasting. For those who don’t live locally, send loved ones a festive Christmas box. For the hostess, why not take all the stress out of hosting with a Holiday Celebration Box from Bingemans @ Home program, including cheese, homemade dips, charcuterie and canapes. For small last-minute treats, grab fresh coffee beans from Monigram Coffee Roasters or festive donuts from Lady Glaze Doughnuts. 

For the Brew Enthusiast 

Who doesn’t love receiving a six-pack of locally crafted brew? With plenty of variety packs to choose from within the Waterloo Region, there is truly something for everyone. Stop by Descendants Beer & Beverage Co. to grab a Mix Six Gift Basket for your favourite beer buddy. Tucked away in Ayr, small batch brewery Willibald offers an ever-changing seasonal menu perfect for making your own six-pack sampler––including options like Drip, an imperial stout with coffee and coconut. For a fun surprise, grab a 12 Days of Beermas holiday pack at TWB Co-Operative Brewing to enjoy 12 different beers, enough to enjoy one each night leading up to the holidays.  


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A post shared by TWB Co-operative Brewing (@twbcoop)

For the Kids 

For those wondering where to start on their gift list for littles, why not pop into Baby Charlotte? This eco-friendly store offers high-quality, sustainable gifts for the smallest loved ones in your life. From bamboo bodysuits, to natural skin care––they’ve thought of everything. When it comes to toy shopping, there is no better local spot than Weve, who offer aesthetically pleasing toys you won’t mind leaving out when guests arrive. For an upscale, sustainable shopping experience, stop by The Sharing Squirrel which offers trendy, pre-loved items for teeny tiny babes all the way up to 6T big kids. Perfect for kids of all ages, Toy Soup in St. Jacobs brings high-quality toys to this independent store that goes beyond the novelty. Find everything from board games, to crafts, to books written by local authors to gift a little holiday magic. 


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A post shared by Baby Charlotte (@babycharlottemama)

For the Fashion Lover 

Seeking something unique for the fashion lover in your life? Unique Boutique offers a curated selection of European style clothing for fashionistas of all ages. From now until Christmas, you can host your own shopping party at the boutique with snacks and refreshments to cross everyone off your list! For a one-of-a-kind shopping experience, visit UNI+KONCEPT, a boutique that focuses on experiential shopping for everything lifestyle––apparel, accessories, beauty and home. 

 Also, don’t forget about the men in your life! At Loop Clothing, gift your loved one a personalized shopping experience with an in-store consultation to evaluate style goals and shop a pre-curated selection. From the latest Air Max sneakers, to graphic tees, to a Canadian Goose jacket––this independent retailer has it all. 

For the Dog Mom & Dad

Don’t forget to spoil your four-legged friend this season! At Paws Evolution Inc, you’ll find everything you need to fill up your pet’s stocking from a new collar, to plush toys, to organic supplements. Planning on having your dog join the food festivities? Consider a gourmet meal from The Healthy Barker, a pet meal service offering human grade meals. For those with pets of all species and sizes, CB Pet Food & Supplies offers a varied selection of food, treats, toys and more. If allergies are a concern, Spoil the Dog Bakery offers nutritious, hypoallergenic, wheat-free treats that are handmade using only fresh, all-natural market ingredients.


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A post shared by Paws Evolution Inc. (@pawsevolution)

Be sure to share your holiday purchases on social using #ExploreWR and #YouGottaShopHereWR, so everyone can join in the fun! This holiday season, the Greater Kitchener Waterloo and Cambridge Chambers of Commerce are working together to create an awareness campaign for businesses in the Waterloo Region. By using the above hashtags, you’ll be supporting your favourite local businesses and helping spread the word throughout our community.

Follow the link below to find out more about #YouGottaShopHereWR



Megan Honan is a seasoned travel, food and lifestyle writer based in Waterloo Region. Megan currently holds bylines for Suitcase Magazine, NUVO, S/Magazine, Canadian Traveller, Days to Come, Swanky Retreats and more. She’s worked with some of the top travel companies across the globe to create content and help with overall brand strategy, including G Adventures and Cosmopolitan Hotels. To connect, please visit https://meganhonan.com


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