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Our 2023 last-minute holiday gift & gift card guide that supports small businesses in Kensington

This year, Kensington Voice partnered with the New Kensington Community Development Corporation (NKCDC) to highlight some new and familiar businesses to share with you for the holidays. 

(Photo illustration by Jill Bauer-Reese)

Whether you're doing last-minute shopping, looking for ideas for the perfect gift, or committed to shopping locally, Kensington's business corridors have much to offer. 

This year, Kensington Voice partnered with the New Kensington Community Development Corporation (NKCDC) to highlight some new and familiar businesses to share with you for the holidays. 

Cantina La Martina. (Photo by Khysir Carter)

Cantina La Martina

2800 D St., Philadelphia, PA 19134 / 267-519-2142

A gift card to James Beard-nominated restaurant Cantina La Martina will make a flavorful gift for the food lover in your family this holiday season. The restaurant & bar on the corner of Kensington Ave and D St offers a flavorful mix of authentic Mexican dishes in a lively atmosphere.

Their 7 Moles Dinner on Wednesday, December 20, will feature a special tasting menu of seven different moles uniquely created by some of Philly's top chefs, including Marc Vetri, Jennifer Zavala, Karla Torres, Reuben Asaram, Odilon Sandoval, Jacob Trinh, and Brian Mattera. A portion of proceeds from that dinner will go towards a food pantry at McPherson Square Library.

Monday - Thursday, 11 a.m. - 10 p.m.
Friday & Saturday, 11 a.m. - 11 p.m.
Sunday, 11 a.m. - 9 p.m.

Follow Cantina La Martina on Facebook & Instagram.

Chuckles Bar & Grill. (Photo by Khysir Carter)

Chuckles Bar & Grill (CBG PHILA)  

3057 Frankford Ave., Philadelphia, PA 19134

Chuckles Bar & Grill, located on the corner of Frankford Avenue and Clearfield Street, is an excellent neighborhood bar to host your holiday events this December. The family-owned bar offers a laid-back atmosphere with games, pool tables, a big screen to watch the Birds on Sundays, delicious bites to eat, and friendly service.

Tuesday, 5 p.m. - 12 a.m.
Wednesday & Thursday, 5 p.m. - 11 p.m.
Friday & Saturday, 5 p.m. - 1 a.m.

Follow Chuckles Bar & Grill on Facebook & Instagram.

Community Center at Visitation. (Photo courtesy of CCV)

Community Center at Visitation Sewing Classes

2646 Kensington Ave., Philadelphia PA 19134 / 215-426-9422

Patrick Ossel, the art director at the Community Center at Visitation (CCV), runs the sewing and arts and crafts classes at the center. Each class costs $10, and folks can learn to make things like T-shirts and bags. 

Monday-Friday, 8:30 a.m. - 5 p.m.

Follow CCV on Facebook & Instagram.

Julia de Burgos Bookstore at Taller Puertorriqueño. (Photo courtesy of Julia de Burgos Bookstore at Taller Puertorriqueño)

Julia de Burgos Bookstore at Taller Puertorriqueño

2600 N 5th St, Philadelphia, PA 19133 / 215-426-3311

There are plenty of excellent gifts to find at the Julia de Burgos Bookstore at Taller Puertorriqueño for the book lover in your family. The bilingual bookstore on North 5th Street features an eclectic selection of books that celebrate Latine culture for readers of all ages.

This holiday season, you can support Philly-based authors by gifting books like My AfroRican State of Soul: A Journey of Identidad, Struggle, Love & Faith, written by local artist and educator Lucas Rivera. The first 20 shoppers to purchase the book will receive a signed copy and a free bookmark.

You can visit the Julia de Burgos Bookstore at Taller Puertorriqueño in person or shop online. They are also hosting a holiday sale on Saturday, Dec. 16 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Tuesday - Friday, 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.

Follow Julia de Burgos Bookstore on Facebook & Instagram.

Live in Color. (Photo by Khysir Carter)

Live in Color

2337 N. Front Street, Philadelphia, PA 19133 / 215-425-4666

Live in Color is the spot to find the perfect gift for the sneakerhead or sports fan in your family. The shop carries all of the latest Nike and Air Jordan sneaker releases and apparel, as well as a collection of other brands like Adidas and Mitchell & Ness. If you're in search of a gift for the diehard Philly sports fan in your family, check out their excellent selection of Eagles, Phillies, Sixers, and Flyers gear.

Monday - Saturday, 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.
Sunday, 10 a.m. - 4 p.m.

Follow Live in Color on Facebook & Instagram.

Liz's Fashion Jewelry. (Photo courtesy of Liz's Fashion Jewelry)

Liz's Fashion Jewelry

Philadelphia, PA 19134

Kensington resident Elizabeth Gonzalez runs Liz's Fashion Jewelry, a popular choice for women who want to add some bling to their outfits. Whether it's statement necklaces, sparkling earrings, or glamorous bracelets, Liz's Fashion Jewelry offers a wide range of options to express personal style.

Every purchase comes packaged in a free gift box with every purchase and customers who purchase over $30 of jewelry receive an extra free gift with their order. Gonzalez sells her products online and in person at various holiday markets.

24/7 online

Follow Liz's Fashion Jewelry on Facebook & Instagram.

M Jewelers. (Photo by Khysir Carter)

M Jewelers

2327 N. Front St., Philadelphia, PA 19133 / 215-634-8448

The Ma family at M Jewelers takes pride in their craftsmanship and care for local customers. The neighborhood jeweler has been a staple on the 2300 block of North Front Street for many years now but recently relocated to a newly renovated storefront at 2327 N. Front St.

If you're looking to gift a keepsake piece of jewelry this holiday season, stop by M Jewelers this holiday season, and you'll be sure to find just the right item.

Monday - Saturday, 9 a.m. - 5 p.m.

Follow M Jewelers on Instagram.

Morris Auto Parts. (Photo by Khysir Carter)

Morris Auto Parts 

2861 Kensington Ave., Philadelphia, PA 19134 / 215-425-0800

Morris Auto Parts is Kensington's go-to shop for auto parts, auto paints, tools and supplies. Family-owned and operated since 1922, the shop offers quality products and friendly customer service to help you find just the right automotive gift for the car-lover in your family. This holiday season, Morris Auto Parts is offering 15% off any purchases of $50 or more.

Monday - Friday, 8 a.m. - 6 p.m.

Philadelphia Martial Arts & Kickboxing. (Photo by Khysir Carter)

Philadelphia Martial Arts & Kickboxing

2756 Frankford Ave., Philadelphia, PA 19134 / 267-304-8388

This holiday season Philadelphia Mixed Martial Arts & Kickboxing is offering 75% off of registration fees, plus free uniforms. The studio uses martial arts as a vehicle to help students develop confidence, integrity, and self-discipline. They offer weeknight classes for both children and adults of all levels.

Make sure to call and say code "Kenzo Holiday Sale" to take advantage of this offer and schedule a free preliminary class.

Monday - Thursday, 4:30 p.m. - 7 p.m.

Follow Philadelphia Martial Arts & Kickboxing on Facebook.

Thunderbird Salvage XMAS Pop-up. (Photo courtesy of Thunderbird Salvage)

Thunderbird Salvage - XMAS pop-up

2441 Frankford Avenue, Philadelphia, PA 19125 / 267-761-4336

From now until New Year's Eve, Thunderbird Salvage has opened up their own Xmas pop-up shop, with Christmas decor and gift options costing as low as one dollar.

The pop-up shop also has a $50 box sale where you can have any item(s) you want that can fit in a provided box for $50. You can also check out their regular shop, which is open every day from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m., down the block at 2441 Frankford Avenue. 

Friday - Sunday, 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.

Follow Thunderbird Salvage on Facebook, and on Instagram (click here for Thunderbird Salvage & here for Thunderbird Salvage's XMAS Pop-Up).

Tip Toes Nail Salon. (Photo by Khysir Carter)

Tip Toes Nail Salon

2532 Kensington Ave., Philadelphia, PA 19125 / 215-426-1999

From manicures and pedicures to brows and lashes to men's hair cuts and beard trims, the friendly and experienced staff at Tip Toes Nail Salon on Kensington Ave offers high-quality services at a modest price. If someone on your gift list might need an afternoon of self-care, a gift card to Tip Toes Nail Salon is the way to go.

Monday - Saturday, 9:30 a.m. - 7 p.m.
Sunday, 9 a.m. - 4 p.m.

Vientiane Bistro. (Photo by Khysir Carter)

Vientiane Bistro

2537 Kensington Ave., Philadelphia, PA 19134 / 267-703-8199

Vientiane Bistro is the perfect spot to share a cozy meal with friends and family this December. The family-owned restaurant offers a warm, tasty mix of Lao and Thai dishes that are sure to hit the spot. Vientiane Bistro offers gift cards and, in addition to sit-down meals, restaurant owner Sunny Phanthavong sells her own small batch jars of homemade Lao chili oil that will make a perfect stocking stuffer for at-home cooks.

Monday - Thursday, 12:30 p.m. - 8 p.m.
Friday & Saturday, 12 p.m. - 9 p.m.

Follow Vientiane Bistro on Facebook & Instagram.

The Waxery. (Photo by Khysir Carter)


3314 Kensington Ave., Philadelphia, PA 19134 / 267-689-8973

Craft your very own personalized candles at Waxery this holiday season. This DIY candle-making bar and BYOB storefront on Kensington Ave is a great spot for holiday parties and family get-togethers this holiday season. Patrons can enjoy a glass of wine, sing karaoke, and craft a candle to bring home to loved ones. If you're unable to make it in for a class or event, Waxery also offers premade candles, which can be purchased on their website.

Monday & Tuesday are private party days
Wednesday - Friday, 5 p.m. - 10 p.m.
Saturday & Sunday, 12 p.m. - 10 p.m.

Follow Waxery on Facebook & Instagram.

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