The holidays are upon us, and for many, that also means football and basketball season! To the die-hard sports fan, visions of mistletoe and holiday cheer are drowned out by visions of fantasy statistics and final-second Hail Mary passes.
So what do you buy for the sports fan that isn’t a set of season tickets? Well, first of all, season tickets are always a stellar choice. But if you want something a little different (and less expensive), here are a few ideas on how to find the perfect gift for a sports lover.
1. Sports Apparel
Sports-related clothing and fan gear never goes out of style! Well, okay, it does. It also wears out. This holiday season might be the perfect time to replace that threadbare team jersey, spring for a new cap or beanie or pick up a comfortable pair of sports-themed slippers. There’s no reason why you can’t show love for your favorite sports team and look good at the same time!
A word of advice for non-sports types, though: if buying clothing with a player’s name on it, be sure it’s a player they like! Otherwise, your gift might be considered ironic, and that would be awkward.
2. Sporting Goods and Technology
Do you know a sports fan who doesn’t just love sports, but actually lives it? Give them a present that will get them in the game. Anything from a new set of golf clubs to a tournament dartboard to a GPS navigator or fitness tracker can help put their enthusiasm on the next level.
3. Sports Games
On the other hand, many sports addicts prefer to show their love from the comfort of a recliner. So you could always just get them a new recliner. But that doesn’t really fit the whole “sports” theme. For video game aficionados, the latest installment of the popular Madden, MLB or NASCAR franchises can help keep them entertained during the off-season. You might even throw an extra wireless controller in their stocking if they’re the short-tempered type.
4. Tours and Experiences
Sometimes the best gift is not the kind you unwrap, but a one-of-a-kind experience they’ll never forget. For a truly special gift, schedule a sports experience or event for your loved one: a tour of Fenway Park, a trip to the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown or a visit to the NASCAR Racing Experience in Daytona. If traveling across the country isn’t in your budget, look around for local events you can attend together.
5. Memorabilia and Man-Cave Accessories
So let’s say the sports fan in your life has all the caps, sweaters and gear they need, and they just went to Fenway Park last week and bought a fresh wireless controller on the way back to replace the one they winged into the fireplace after a catastrophic final quarter in Madden NFL 15. You feel like you’re down to buying a souvenir with a team logo on it and calling it a day.
Don’t feel bad! There’s only one thing sports fans love more than a chance to show their team loyalty, and that’s statistics. No, wait, it’s bonding over their favorite team. Actually, it’s all those things. Giving your favorite super-fan a piece of sports memorabilia they can wear, display or show off to their buddies is rarely a bad choice. Plus, they’ll know you’re thinking of them — and, more importantly, you know their favorite team. That’s what really counts.
But seriously, it’s hard to go wrong with season tickets.
Do you have any great holiday stories about the sports lovers in your life? I’d love to hear them. Tell me in the comments below and check out our gift guide if you need more fresh ideas!