Roses and chocolates may be the norm for Valentine’s Day gifts, but Al Bacon offers sweethearts something outside the box.
Bacon, owner of Al’s Gun and Reel Shop in Derry, said his shop sees Valentine’s Day customers, too.
“A lot of ladies are buying guns now,” he said. “It’s not like the old days anymore.”
Bacon now offers a line of pink guns, complete with pink ammunition. A portion of those sale proceeds goes to help fight breast cancer.
He said he’s talked to couples whose Valentine’s Day plans were to go shooting together.
“A lot of girls go shooting with their husbands,” he said. “It gives the guys a partner to go with.”
Guns aren’t the only unusual gift.
Some couples make their Valentine’s Day sentiments permanent.
“We get people coming in occasionally for joint Valentine’s Day tattoos,” said Josh Charland, managing owner of Heritage Tattoos in Salem.
Having a sweetheart’s name in a heart or matching cherubs inked on is fairly popular, he said. So, too, are puzzle pieces and a key-and-lock combination.
But, Charland admits, it’s not something seen very often for the February holiday.
“It takes a certain type of person to consider a tattoo as a Valentine’s Day gift,” Charland said. “It’s not like roses.”
Roses, candy and jewelry may be traditional, but they are all still popular.
“Business has been great,” said Dan Veniga, a florist at Delahanty Nursery and Florist in Windham. “We are up from last year. People seem to be in good moods this year.”
Veniga said roses are the most popular Valentine’s Day choice, but spring floral arrangements also sell well.
Rick Boie, owner of Pearl’s Candy in Salem, said he has been busy this week.