Off the Rock, On the Record: “These are a few of our favorite things”

We’re getting into the holiday spirit early…because why not? On this quasi-season of Off the Rock, On the Record, we’re bringing in themes tied to some of our favorite times of the year! Season nine, episode one is all about giving. If you’re looking to shop or support a local business or organization this holiday season, we have a list for you. Our team shares insight on some of their favorite local gifts that should top your holiday shopping list. 

Bluff City Toffee

We love to shop locally because you can share a piece of our city with your friends and loved ones while supporting a small business. In a city known for its food scene like Memphis, it can be tough to narrow down your options! If you have a natural sweet tooth, Brittany suggests Bluff City Toffee. Owner Stephanie Upshaw started her business by gifting her treats to friends and family, so you know they make an impeccable present. Not to mention, there are several *sweet* options to choose from!  


As a Memphian, Gracie loves to give gifts that showcase the passion and talent that our city boasts, while straying away from run-of-the-mill Memphis-themed products like anything that has to do with Elvis or basketball. If you’re looking to share unique art pieces that celebrate our city and the wonderful women in your life, look no further than ARCHd. Sisters Kristen and Lindsey Archer use their talents in photography and graphic design to create handmade home decor on wood and marble. Every design they share is meant to empower women or celebrate your city – whether it be Memphis, Boston, Chicago or somewhere else. Plus, a percentage of your purchase is donated to organizations that focus on empowering women, positively impacting and uplifting the Black community or supporting the arts.

The Humane Society of Memphis and Shelby County

We all have that person that we tend to find ourselves shopping for at the last-minute. It’s not because you love them any less; it’s because they are either the type of person who buys themselves everything they need when they need it, a person with eccentric tastes or they’re the person on your list who gives the best gifts. No pressure! If you’re looking for an impactful gift idea, consider donating to an organization on their behalf or in their honor. This year, Taylor is doing just that by donating to the Humane Society of Memphis and Shelby County, a nonprofit organization focused on meeting the needs of injured, abused and neglected animals in the Mid-South. Animals in their care have a home for life in their facility should they need it, and are never euthanized due to space in the shelter or time needed to heal. A donation to the Humane Society helps them offer lifesaving care through their low-cost veterinary services, foster and training programs, and community education.

Sue Layman Designs

Everyone needs a pop of color in their lives and in their living rooms. If you’re looking for a gift for someone who appreciates modern art, Sue Layman Designs should be added to your list, according to Murray. Sue Layman Lightman is a local artist who owns a chic three-story gallery on G.E. Patterson in Downtown Memphis’ historic South Main Arts District. The walls are filled with the most colorful hues and wonderfully fun abstract pieces that are sure to captivate and enthrall its visitors. Plus, she has artwork for sale. So, if you’re captivated enough by a piece, you can gift it to the art lover in your life!

Memphis Americans 

This one goes out to our sports fanatics! If you’ve gifted tickets to a Grizz game, a jersey from the latest 901FC season or Redbirds baseball merch – you might think you’ve run out of ideas. Fear not! Jackson has some insight on an emerging team to keep your eyes peeled for. The National Indoor Soccer League will present its new team, the Memphis Americans, at Landers Center in Southaven this December! The season will run into 2022 and will boast indoor games with the energy like you’ve never seen before. Think the Memphis Riverkings meets Memphis 901FC, but put it indoors and add an incredible women’s soccer team to the mix. If you know a Memphis sports fan, this is going to be an exciting addition they won’t want to miss! 

Whether you’re looking to please the foodies in your life, the sports fan, the artist, the feminist or the giver, we hope you’ll consider adding these gifts to your list. If you’re curious to hear more about these amazing options, check out episode one of the most recent season of Off the Rock, On the Record.