Gifts for Even the Pickiest Dads on Father’s Day

Hooray for dads! It’s time to show the old man a little love. But let’s think beyond neckties, coffee mugs, and cheesy t-shirts this year. Dad is unique, so get him something he’ll really enjoy! Here are some ideas for Father’s Day gifts that are sure to please even the pickiest papas.

For car-loving dads

For the dad who counts his car among his children, try something he can use to keep it spick and span. A car detailing kit with specialized cleaners and waxes will help keep his baby looking its best. Or consider a trunk organizer to wrangle all of his (and the kids’) odds and ends. Look for a collapsible option that can be stowed away when not in use, and make sure it has sturdy sides so nothing will roll out.

If Dad is more interested in the racing side of the car-world, these minimalist track sculptures are an artistic way to show his enthusiasm. Or how about tickets to a race, to really get his heart beating?

For movie-geek dads

If the TV’s built-in speakers just aren’t cutting it on movie night, give Dad the gift of a theater-like experience with a sound bar. Or get him a gorgeous boxed set or collector’s edition, like the Clint Eastwood Collection, Back to the Future: The Complete Adventures, or this Rocky Boxed Set.

Get the kids involved! Put together a movie bundle — movie, popcorn, and candy — for Dad to enjoy with the family. For the film, pick a favorite from Dad’s childhood so he can share it with the next generation.

For outdoorsy dads

Get the consummate outdoorsman some goodies that he can put to use! The Rolls Royce of the cooler world is surely the Yeti, in a variety of colors and sizes. He can take it camping, keep steaks cold before throwing them on the grill, or just fill it up with frosty beers.

If Dad doesn’t get out into the wilderness as often as he’d like, bring a bit of the campsite to the backyard with a firepit. They come in a wide array of shapes, sizes, designs, and budgets.

And if he just needs a good vantage point where he can survey his domain (and watch the grill)? An Adirondack or rocking chair is just the ticket.

For fitness-junkie dads

Just because he’s a dad doesn’t mean he’s destined for a “dad bod”. If fitness is a big part of his life, encourage him with some accessories!

A quality pair of wireless headphones are always a good choice, as is a sturdy gym bag. Look for one that’s machine washable, so Dad isn’t lugging around a stink bomb.

And if he’s having trouble tracking his reps and sets at the gym, grab him a Fitbook where he can track his strength training, cardio, classes, and even diet.

For foodie dads

The best thing about a dad who loves to cook is all the tasting you get to do! Help him find his inspiration with a beautiful cookbook like Flour Water Salt Yeast or the Southern Living Ultimate Book of BBQ.

Check out The Spice House for gift boxes of unique spice blends like Butcher’s Rubs, Curry Lover’s, or flavors from around Chicago’s ethnic neighborhoods.

And if he doesn’t have one yet, hop on the sous vide train! This method of cooking involves placing your food in a sealed plastic bag and submerging it in water for a thoroughly even cook. It’s a set-and-forget method that results in perfectly tender and juicy meat every time.

For bookworm dads

If Dad can’t get enough literature, an e-reader like the Amazon Kindle or Nook will let him take his entire library with him on the go. But if he’s a traditionalist, a handsome book weight will keep his tome laying flat while he reads.

Whether he likes paper-and-ink or electronic, a book light will let him read into the night while Mom sleeps undisturbed. And a reading journal will let him jot down his thoughts as he reads away.

For musical dads

Vinyl is making a major comeback, so why not surprise Dad with a record player? If he already has one, records for collection will always be a hit. Flip through what he already has and find an artist of a similar style that he may not be familiar with yet.

If he likes live music, how about concert tickets to see one of his favorite bands? Or help him get all those old tickets out of the shoebox they’ve been in for 20 years with a ticket stub book.

For sports-fan dads

There are more team-branded gifts out there than you can imagine. How about a football helmet-shaped Bluetooth speaker for tailgates? Or a bottle opener made from a real MLB baseball bat?

Hockey puck drink chillers?

A scarf repping his favorite football club?

An NBA ugly sweater?

The options are endless! And of course, you can’t go wrong with tickets for Dad to see his favorite team in action.

For tech-savvy dads

Some people just can’t get enough shiny new gadgets. Luckily, we live in a time when gizmos are abundant. Smart home outlets and switches will let him turn devices on and off remotely. No more complaining about the kids leaving the lights on all the time!

If he already has lots of gizmos, an accessory organizer will keep everything neat and untangled. And a charging pad will keep his smartphone juiced up and ready to go.

For a neat high-tech addition to the nightstand, consider a sleep and wakeup light that provides gentle sounds to lull him to sleep and a soft light in the morning to wake him up.

For sentimental dads

Some dads are all about capturing the memories, and we salute them! While Instagram and Facebook are great, help him bring those memories into the real world with something he can touch.

A photo printer, like the Ivy or Sprocket, is a fun way to get instant prints from your smartphone. Or try the Instax camera for a combo of digital and Polaroid cameras, all in one sleek device.

A family photo book with all of Dad’s happiest memories will surely make him smile. Or how about a phone case featuring junior’s original art?

It can be hard shopping for the man that has everything. Show him how much you appreciate him by focusing on his interests when you’re choosing a gift this Father’s Day. Thanks for everything, Dad!


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