Let’s not mince words: Father’s Day is coming up and you need to do something.

Would Dad let one little pandemic stop him from showing how much he loves you? Shopping Siren thinks not. After all, there was that time he built that volcano for you for the 4th grade science fair — for which you won second prize, I might add — even though he had just gotten off a double shift at work. Or when he taught you how to drive and didn’t yell once despite the fact you kind of stink as a driver. Or how he always brings Oreos to share when he visits, just because he knows you like them and also Mom won’t let them in their house.

But Dad, any good dad, wouldn’t want you to go to any trouble for him. Not on a random Tuesday and most definitely not during a pandemic.

Here’s where a little planning comes in.

You need to do something. Like, literally, do something. You’ve been stuck inside for three months now and it’ll feel good to have a mission greater than Find Paper Towels. Father’s Day is that greater mission.

Do something for Dad. Or do something with Dad. (Socially distanced and medically responsible, of course.) Or do something Dad would be proud of.

Nah, forget the last one. He’s already proud. He’s your dad.

• Grab a mask, go for a walk

As long as you mask up, keep at least six feet apart and stay outside, you and your dad can have a lovely afternoon stroll together. Need a mask? Since you have some time before Father’s Day, maybe try ordering something custom, like Gray-based MainelyCrochetDesign‘s headband design that keeps the mask from tugging your ears sore. Need a place to walk? The Thorncrag Nature Sanctuary in Lewiston is open and has 450 acres on which to spread out. Just be sure to leave Fido at home. He and Dad can have some quality nap time later.

• Wash Dad’s car

I’m going to go out on a limb here and say there are two types of dad cars: red and sporty or white and rugged. Both currently have an inch-thick layer of pollen on them. Clean them up! Grab a hose and bucket and do the job yourself, or buy a book of car washes from one of those places that exists solely to miracle away grime. Yvon’s Supersonic Car Wash has locations in Lewiston, Auburn, Sabattus and Mechanic Falls, and you can buy gift cards or car wash books online. Dad will thank you. His car will thank you. The neighbor kid who scrawls “wash me” on the car’s back window every morning will not thank you, but Billy needs to get a new hobby anyway.

• Get (or give) a hair cut

You’ll have to wear a mask and you’ll probably have to make an appointment, but barber shops and hair salons are open for all your hair cutting needs. But maybe your dad is hesitant to go to a full service salon because his 20-year-old clippers work just fine and he likes the sides uneven like that, thank you very much. There’s always Hair Station in Auburn, a car-themed salon where he can meet the pit crew and order from the menu of body work, paint jobs or wax and shine. Prices start at $22 for a men’s “tune up.” Dad will be stylin’ in no time.

• Get him cooking

Does your dad like to grill? Then he’d love the Lynx mobile kitchen gas barbecue at Agren Appliance for $7,209! You can totally afford this all-ceramic gas grill with two burners, 850 square inches of cooking surface and premium smoker box. It’s only the price of a good used car.

Get your dad an all-ceramic gas grill for just over $7,000 at Agren Appliance and he will definitely cook your burger the way you like it. Probably.

Or.

Check out the little Weber Go Anywhere gas grill with one burner, 160 square inches of cooking space and a porcelain-enameled cooking grate. For $70. Either grill will cook lunch medium-rare while dad sips a beer and happily passes on to you his famed burger-flipping technique. It’s all in the wrist.

• Buy him flowers, Blais Flower and Garden Center, $40 and up

Men like flowers, too! Blais knows this, which is why they have an entire Father’s Day section on their website. Get a small pot of lilies for $40 or move up to “Strength and Roses” for $125. If you’re sure Dad isn’t a flower guy, there are also succulents for $65 and a “Blooming Dish Garden” for $59.95. He kept you alive through your bookshelf-climbing toddler phase, surely he can handle a couple of plants.

Best find: Give him a call

It’s free or practically so. And you know it’s what he wants most.

Think twice: About ignoring the day completely

Dad not the greatest/not around? No problem! All of these things would be just as cherished by your mom, brother, spouse, best friend, awesome coworker, friendly neighbor who helped plow out your driveway last winter. Or you.  Because you should be proud of you, too.

Shopping Siren’s true identity is protected by a pair of stylish, sweater-wearing Doberman pinschers (who will be honoring the dog father) and the Customer Service counter at the Sun Journal. You can reach her at [email protected]


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