Saturday, April 1, 2023
April 1, 2023

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Clark County’s 12 Days of Christmas

Trade in the birds for local favorites of foam, flannel and fleece

By , Columbian staff writer
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We’re all painfully familiar with the song “Twelve Days of Christmas.” The gift-giver who proposed that parade of presents would end up paying $45,523.27 for them now, according to the latest Christmas Price Index from PNC. But we must ask ourselves — how useful is a partridge in a pear tree? How useful are any of the gifts from that song? Not very. And so here is a new list, specific to the wants and needs of Clark County’s true loves.

An all-wheel-drive EV parked by a pine tree: All-wheel drive is helpful on those Forest Service roads and when inclement weather strikes. That’s probably why Subarus are so popular in the Northwest. To make a gift worthy of a Clark County 12 Days of Christmas, however, it must be special. The electric, all-wheel-drive 2023 Subaru Solterra will run a gift-giver in the range of $44,995 — its manufacturer’s suggested retail price. The pine tree is not included.

Two Air Pods: The coveted Apple Air Pods are a favorite of iPhone users and those who simply like to jam to rap music or their favorite podcast. They have inspired many other Bluetooth earbuds. The third-generation Apple pair costs $169; the second-generation costs $129.

Three fleece jackets: Fleece is a fall and winter staple in the Northwest and there is no shortage of brands. The North Face women’s Osito runs $59 on The North Face’s website, while the REI women’s Groundbreaker costs slightly less at $49.95. The women’s Benton Springs Full Zip Fleece Jacket from Columbia Sportswear retails at $65. Buy all three for $173.95.

Four trekking poles: Not all Southwest Washington hiking enthusiasts consider trekking poles a must, but they lend mountain-goat-like stability on those tricky Cascadian terrains. Two pairs of Diorite Cork Trekking Poles from Portland-based CNOC Outdoors will cost $379.98.

Five gold rings: Gold is timeless — and expensive. The price for this commodity has risen by 40 percent, according to the recent PNC Christmas Price Index. The index estimated the price for five gold rings to be $1,245.

Six microbrews: Craft brewing has certainly come into its own in Clark County. A six-pack of Loowit Brewing Grimlock Rye Porter will cost $10.99, while a six-pack of Orange Whip from Fortside Brewing costs $12.49.

Seven flannel shirts: A week’s worth of flannel will get any Northwesterner through the chilly winter. A woolen Pendleton men’s Plaid Board Shirt will run $159-$169 per shirt. The lucky person getting seven of those will receive a gift worth up to $1,183.

Eight local wines: Southwest Washington is home to a blossoming viticulture industry. The price for a good bottle of local wine will differ depending on the winery and the variety of wine. But it’ll likely cost $25-$40 a bottle, putting the price for eight bottles in the range of $200-$320.

Nine tattoo sessions: Creativity and ink can cost a lot. Prices differ depending on the complexity of the tattoo and the experience of the artist. Portland-based Adorn Body Art charges $160 minimum for a small tattoo and $160 per hour for larger tattoos. Nine small tattoos would run at least $1,440.

Ten loose-leaf teas: Loose-leaf tea is almost always preferable to the discerning Northwest palette. A 1.2-ounce bag from Vancouver’s Valhalla Tea Company costs $11.99, making the price for 10 $119.90.

Eleven Couve coffees: A number of coffee roasters in Vancouver sell roasted beans. A pound will cost $18 to $30, depending on the type of coffee and the roaster. Thus the price for 11 pounds, enough to make a lot of coffee, would run about $198 to $330.

Twelve vegan pastries: It wouldn’t be the holiday season without a delicious pastry, and it wouldn’t be a Northwest holiday without making it vegan. Vancouver’s Bleu Door Bakery has several such plant-based options: a Danish at $3.25, a scone at $3.75, sweet bread at $3.75 and a cardamom cinnamon roll at $4. Or choose a lemon iced cookie at $2.75 or raspberry coffee cake at $3.75. A dozen of these vegan treats would cost between $33 and $48.

Useful? Local? Yes. But not inexpensive. Thanks to the Subaru, this impressive gift list will cost at least $50,107.82. But, you won’t have to clean up after all those birds.