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Best All-Ages Gift Emporium

Yikes! Toys/Picante Designs
306 E. Congress St.

STAFF PICK: While the kiddies handle the rubber snakes and yo-yos in Yikes!, grown-ups can wander into adjoining Picante Designs to gaze upon the shrine kits (to Garcia, Hendrix and Joplin). It's unlikely there's another shop on the planet in which you can buy plastic vomit, milagros to heal your broken heart, a Jeep sculpture made of tin cans and real-looking eyeballs to drop in some unsuspecting recipient's drink. Decorating the new digs? How about some doll heads to hang in the bathroom, Loteria cards to line the kitchen cabinets, a string of pink flamingos for the bedroom, and a light-up goose for the foyer? The serious shopper may also find some fine artwear in the way of earrings made of soda bottle caps and Sunday funnies cutouts. Owner Hazel Rugg also stocks everything from Guatemalan weavings to squid-shaped squirt guns. These two shops have the most dazzling and daring array of campy, folky, whimsical, silly and ludicrous gifts anywhere.

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