Holiday shoppers come in all varieties. Early shoppers are finished in October. Year-round shoppers stow away gifts for friends and family throughout the year. Then, there are the procrastinators—20% of Americans, who wait until the last-minute. With online shopping and next-day delivery, this sort of shopper can now put it off even longer.  But, the majority of holiday shoppers aren’t procrastinating or buying early, they are just trying to figure out the right gift without repeating the same gift every year.  One way to accomplish this is to give the gift of Franklin County. Pair up local products and make a one-of-a-kind gift basket. It is original and made in America.

Holiday Cheer

Franklin County has two wineries—and a brewery, plus five chocolatiers. Pair them together in a Franklin County basket of holiday cheer to make a sweet gift. Get started by picking the basket or container. Use a straw basket, a wicker basket, or a bucket. Lots of containers can be repurposed, and it gives the gift basket a unique touch. As filler use shredded paper. (Reuse and recycle by collecting the cuttings from the big printer at work.) Another unusual filler is the colored comic pages from the newspaper. Tuscarora Winery, 25 Lincoln Way West in Chambersburg, offers 1864 The Burning of Chambersburg—which adds a touch of Franklin County history, too. Jan Zell is Franklin County’s newest winery with a tasting room at 251 Grant Street. A favorite of Jan Zell Wines is Summer Daze—a crabapple and chardonnay blend. Add in the liquid art of Roy Pitz Brewing Company—something like Lay Down Stay Down Ale with dark fruit flavors, spice, figs, toasted plum and nuts and the sweetness of Belgian candi sugar. Add a pair of wine and a pair of pint glasses to the basket. Fill in open spaces of the basket with chocolate from one or more of Franklin County’s small-batch chocolate shops. Make sure to grab some caramels, too, because caramel complements beer. Olympia Candy Kitchen, Nathan Miller Chocolate Co., and Mrs. Gibble’s Candies in Chambersburg or the Candy Kitchen and Zoe’s Chocolate Co. in Waynesboro are chocolate and candy destinations in Franklin County. Wrap the entire gift basket with cellophane or tulle netting and top it off with a Bordeaux-colored bow!

Baby, It’s Cold Outside!

Pair-up two cold weather favorites—Whitetail Ski Resort and Pachillina. Pachillina, 13 South Main Street in Mercersburg offers natural, organic and eco-friendly clothing, such as wool, pima cotton, linen, bamboo and silk and alpaca.  Natural fibers are better for the wearer and the environment. Pair up gloves, a scarf, and hat with ski passes or a six-pack of tubing tickets from Whitetail Ski Resort. Whitetail, 13805 Blairs Valley Road in Mercersburg is an easy drive from I-70, I-81, and Route 30.  Baby, It’s Cold Outside is a great gift for those active friends and family who appreciate the outdoors.  For a different way to give a lift pass, mount it in a fun frame and tie the hat, gloves, and scarves together in the center with jute twine. Pop everything in a burlap satchel and accent with candy canes.

Apples, Ale & Gouda

Tracey’s Orchard, 12483 Hollowell Church Road, Greencastle, is open through Christmas and is a great place to pick-up apples for gift baskets. Granny Smith, Jonagold, Gala, Pink Lady and Fugi are just a few varieties available. Plus, there is still cider. Whispering Brook Cheese Haus, 8875 Edenville Cheesetown Rd, Chambersburg, specializes in homemade, small batch cheese, like Gouda and seriously sharp cheddar. Pick a few varieties of cow and goat milk cheeses. For the ale, visit Good Ta Go, 1640 Orchard Drive in Chambersburg, for the largest selection of microbrews, imports, and domestics in the tri-state area. Arrange the apples, cheese, and ale in a soft cooler, accent with pine cones, and a gold bow for a one-of-a-kind gift.

Adding Martin’s Potato Rolls, made on Potato Roll Lane in Chambersburg, gives any gift basket the flavor of Franklin County. Try adding home-baked whoopee pies from the Butcher Shoppe in Chambersburg, apple butter from Paul’s Country market, or a smoked ham from Eby’s Meats, 3789 Guilford Springs Road in Chambersburg. Treat friends and family to a taste of Franklin County.