We'll come right out and say it: finding the perfect gift for dad is hard! While a beer delivery or a fresh pair of socks is never a bad idea (in fact, socks make an appearance on this list), the best gifts are often more personal. And, when we say "dad," we mean your papa bear, your father figure, your kids' dad, or just the wisest guy you know. Need some inspiration? The MSA team is picking up gift subscriptions, T-shirts, grilling tools, nods to beloved sports teams, and more thoughtful gifts for their pops. Get all the details below!
Looking for more gift ideas—specifically, subscriptions that send gadgets, barbecue utensils, hammocks, and stuff? Check out our gift guide of the best subscription box gift ideas for Father's Day!
The MSA Team's Father's Day Gift Top Picks:
Why I chose it: My husband is much more sappy than I am when it comes to family photos, keepsakes, and nostalgia. He's been hinting for awhile that he wants to hang a gallery of family photos on our main stairwell, so I've been looking for some options that are fun, affordable, and easy to hang for Father's Day. I love the look of Mixtiles' adhesive backings, which seem like a perfect fit for our old plaster walls. I also have gotten a few Instagram ads for Pops recently, and I think a few lenticular photos in the mix would be a fun way to add movement, especially for our candid iPhone snapshots of our very active boys. If you have tried either of these firsthand, I'd love to hear what you thought in the comments!
The Item: ESPN+
The Cost: $4.99/mo or get the Hulu/Disney+/ESPN+ bundle for $12.99/mo.
Why I chose it: My dad is obsessed with watching any and all sports! So, a streaming subscription is a no-brainer, especially right now, while live sports are paused. Like a few of us mentioned here, I know he'll enjoy all of the 30 for 30 documentaries and The Last Dance.
The Item: Longest Rain Delay in History T-Shirt
The Cost: $28.00
Why I chose it: I absolutely love baseball, and this love started with going to local and professional games with my stepdad! He has seriously been missing his fave sports. He also has loads of clever and dad-joke themed tees, so this was a no-brainer!
The Item: NPR Membership
The Cost: Whatever you can give!
Why I chose it: Charlie has also worked for public radio since college, and I make a point to renew my NPR membership each year on Father's Day in his honor. He always says it is his favorite gift.
The Item: Smartwool Socks
The Cost: Ranges from $14.95-$35.95 per pair
Why I chose it: $15 might seem bananas for a single pair of socks, but with a few Smartwools in your drawer, you don't need nearly as many! My family, and my husband especially, always looks forward a re-up of these high-quality socks (made with Merino wool, which wick moisture, so even though they're wool they aren't super hot). They do last a long time and lend themselves nicely to mending, but sometimes being treated to a new pair is just what he needs to feel loved.
The Item: Thermapen Mk4
The Cost: $99.00
Why I chose it: This electric thermometer is a must-have for the grill master or chef in your life! I gave this to my husband last year, and he uses it almost every day. It gives you an instant digital reading of the temperature of your food, and he says it's the reason his burgers and steaks turn out perfect every time. My dad loves grilling in the summertime (he actually owns four different types of grills), so this is going to be the perfect gift for him! The Thermapen comes in a bunch of different fun colors, so you can pick a subtle gray or black if your dad isn't a flashy guy, or you can pick a bright color to match his favorite sports team!
The Item: Legacy Box
The Cost: Starter Kit is $59.99, ranging up to $1099.99 + shipping
Why I chose it: My dad has so many old home movies and videos that we rarely watch since they are difficult to get playing without breaking out the old camcorder and the accompanying cords. This service allows you to send in some of those old media items and professionally digitizes them for you. You can have them sent back to you as digital downloads, on a thumb drive, or even on discs (although some computers don’t even have those anymore!). Since I am new to this company and concept, I purchased 2 starter kits for my dad. They have a 2 item option and then the next one up is 10, but I didn’t want to commit to that many items in case it doesn’t work out! Each kit allows him to convert up to 2 tapes, 2 films, or 2 sets of 25 pictures to digital. Since photos are easy enough to scan, I’m sure he’ll choose the video option and I’m positive he will find some fun, embarrassing home videos to share with us and I can’t wait! Especially now that I have children - I’m sure they would love to see the old footage!
The Item: My BBQ Box
The Cost: $22.99 a month. Save with longer commitments.
Why I chose it: We recently upgraded our grilling platform from a Weber charcoal grill to a Pit Boss Pellet Grill/Smoker combo, and my husband has become obsessed! I swear he now spends more time looking up barbecue recipes than I look up baking recipes! I noticed there are quite a few barbecue subs out there, but this one caught my eye as it not only sends custom rubs and sauces, but they also give you recipes and instructions for a variety of grilling methods! I can't wait for him to get the first box!
The Item: Massey Ferguson Mailbox
The Cost: $89.99
Why I chose it: My dad is a farmer, and has absolutely everything. He is seriously the hardest person to buy for! He has a passion for Massey Ferguson tractors, and owns 9 full-size versions and as many toy models as I can afford! While I know this isn't a subscription item, I happened across this bright red mailbox with the Massey logo across the side!!! I think it is a clever gift and no one will miss his house now! I can't wait to give it to him!
The Item: Basic Leather Care Kit
The Cost: $39.99
Why I chose it: My father-in-law is a Texan and proud of it. When the occasion calls for it, he still loves to break out his cowboy boots. This kit will help keep those boots as hardy and healthy as his big personality.
The Cost: $34
Why I chose it: My family has always enjoyed a nice bottle of vino, and this bottle stopper celebrates the National Championship that my alma mater just won. Obtaining my law degree is something my entire family is incredibly proud of, so I may actually need to order quite a few to keep up with the 8 brothers and sisters my dad has (all of whom, of course, enjoy a nice bottle of wine). In a perfect world this would be packaged along with a bottle of wine to break in the wine stopper, too.
The Item: A subscription to The Athletic
The Cost: $9.99 a month for a monthly subscription; $59.88 for an annual subscription.
Why I chose it: Sports and booze are two things my family has always bonded over, but with the current pandemic, the normal summer schedule of watching a baseball game on the TV after work isn’t really happening. A subscription to The Athletic gives the reader access to high-quality sports journalism, and many of the stories offer an in-depth, unique perspective that I don’t see from other news sources (especially as they’ve been more creative with their content when there are not 162 baseball games to write about). This feels like the kind of splurge-y thing my dad never would have purchased for himself, but he would enjoy reading about his favorite teams.
The Item: Birkenstocks
The Cost: $125 on Amazon.
Why I chose it: My dad and husband wear their Birks ALL.THE.TIME. in the summer, so it's always time for a new pair about this time of year. I get them for my dad almost every year. Let's hope he doesn't wear them with socks!
Do any of these great Father's Day gift suggestions strike your fancy? Let us know in the comments what you're getting for your dad!