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88Nine’s 12 Days of Christmas Gift Guide: day 7, gifts for Star Wars fans

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Storm Trooper Decanter + 2 Whisky Tumbler Set, $97.95

Impress your fellow clones and raise a toast to The Emperor with a few generous measures from the Original Stormtrooper Decanter, which can hold 600ml (20oz) of your favorite Dutch courage. Pair that with TWO Stormtrooper Whisky Tumblers, each 5.07oz (150mL) in size. A proper fan of the Star Wars universe should only enjoy drinks from a Star Wars Stormtrooper Whiskey Tumbler!

Stormtrooper Decanter

Stance Star Wars Socks, $20+

These Star Wars-themed socks will give your feet a taste of the force in a variety of amazing designs.  You can buy them individually or in a variety of 3-packs and 6-packs.

 Star Wars Socks Stance


Sphero App-Enable droids, $89.99+

These small droids are simply amazing.  They are almost like the real thing with authentic moves and sounds.  You can control and program the droids with your smartphone via Bluetooth.

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88Nine’s 12 Days of Christmas Gift Guide: day six, gifts for the outdoor explorer

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Buff Headgear, $20

Ear warmer, balaclava, neck warmer, hair tie. These things are multifunctional and adaptable, so you can sport it in whatever way suits you best.  They are wind resistant to keep you warm, and moisture wicking to keep you dry. Buffs are used by runners, hunters, boaters and hikers alike. They are one of those simple items you don’t think about, but once you have one, you can’t live without it. You can find Buffs online, and also at major outdoor retailers or local running stores such as InStep or Performance Running Outfitters.


Park People Membership, $40

With over 135 parks in the county, chances are you’ve been to a Milwaukee County Park at least once in your life. Did you know you can become a member? The Park People Membership lasts all year and benefits the maintenance, revitalization and management of the County Parks. As an added perk, each membership includes a coupon booklet to get you (or your giftee) out to enjoy different parks, including a round of golf, a pint of beer at the Traveling Beer Garden, entry into Cool Waters, Botanical Gardens and Red Arrow Ice Rink.


Kayak or Paddleboard Rentals, $35-$65 from Milwaukee Kayak

If you’re seeking something more summer-oriented, why not gift a day to explore Milwaukee by water. A gift certificate to Milwaukee Kayak can offer your giftee a daily rental or guided tour either by Kayak or Paddle Board.  


Luci Solar Powered Light,  $19.95

These inflatable lights are so handy and surprisingly bright. They are lightweight, durable, waterproof and collapse down to just 1 inch when you need to pack them away. Luci lights do not require batteries, and are always ready to go (as long as you have some sun). These can work on the backyard patio, around the campsite or for your next full moon bike ride.

Luci lights also operate on a buy one, give one model, so every light purchased helps send another light to search and rescue groups, disaster relief missions or families who live without access to electricity.

To check them out in person, you can find these lights at REI.

Wisconsin State Park Vehicle Admission Sticker, $28 (for vehicles with WI license plates)

If you want to get away for a hike at Lapham Peak State Park or hit up a campground next year, this will come in handy. One sticker grants access to all Wisconsin State Parks for 2018. Without a sticker, you’ll be required to pay each time you visit a park.

Annual park stickers and passes can be purchased by calling the DNR at 888-936-7463 or as part of a gift package from the Friends of Wisconsin State Parks.

Oxford Pennant “Get Lost” Pin, $8.00

Even the most rugged outdoorsman (or woman), can still rock their gear in style. These lapel pins, custom crafted from Lost Lust Supply, based in Portland, can let your giftee express themselves through designs inspired by animals, outdoor gear or wise words to live by.


Cairn Monthly Subscription Box, $29.95/mo

For the outdoor junkie who has everything, here’s an easy way to help them discover new gear. The Cairn subscription box operates similar to a lot of those other subscription programs, but what’s nice about this one is that all the products are full sized and by reviewing the items, subscribers can earn points to use towards discounts on future gear.




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88Nine’s 12 Days of Christmas Gift Guide: day five, gifts for musicians

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HD Musicians Ear Plugs, $18-20

When you’re a musician, ear protection is a must, but you don’t want to turn all sound into a muffled mash. High fidelity hearing protection helps to filter out dangerous sound levels while keeping the distinction between sounds so you can hear your cues and also makes enjoying live music a whole lot better. Your favorite musician will thank you for these EarPeace HD Musicians Ear Plugs useful, and thoughtful gift!

EarPeace HD Musicans Ear Plusgs

Apogee JAM portable interface, $129

The guitar or bass player on your list will love this portable recording interface. Turning a smart phone or iPad into a mini recording studio allows for ideas to get put down and for more fun on long road trips, boring conference hotel stays or for recording your next hit record in a cabin in the woods. Get it here.

The guitar or bass player on your list will love this portable recording interface. Turning a smart phone or iPad into a mini recording studio allows for ideas to get put down and for more fun on long road trips, boring conference hotel stays or for recording your next hit record in a cabin in the woods.

Teenage Engineering Pocket Operators, $49-89

These calculator sized synthesizers pack a surprising wall of sound. Hook them up to speakers and you’ve got a professional sounding synth in your pocket. The Pocket Operators come in a variety of drum machines and melodic synthesizers that you can connect together or play solo. They have an on-board volume as well so you can noodle around with them in bed, on your lunch break, or anywhere you want to make a little noise.

Teenage Engineering Pocket Operator

Pick Punch, $20+

Somehow you can always find a guitar pick in the wash, but sometimes they aren’t around when you actually need them. If you’ve got a random jar lid, expired credit card, hotel key, then you can have a pick! Just keep this pick punch in your guitar case.

Pick Punch

TronicalTune Robot Guitar Tuning System, $189+

Robot tuners started out with some bugs but they seem to have advanced quite a bit. Save your favorite musician a lot of time and hassle with this gift – users can tune a guitar in seconds with a single strum. If the player uses multiple tunings, they can store them in the system and can swap to the new tuning immediately without stopping the set. Get it here!

Guitar Tuner

Johnny Marr Jaguar Guitar, $1,799

Even if you can’t play like him, you can now own his guitar, the Fender Jaguar Johnny Marr signature model. Based on his 1965 Jaguar, this guitar plays like a dream.

Johnny Marr Jaguar Guitar

Sonor Signature Horst Link HLD590 8×14 Bell Bronze Snare Drum, $5,995+

Got a drummer on your list and deep pockets? Really deep pockets? The Horst Link Bell Bronze snare drum from Sonor is one of the most sought-after collectible drums on the planet and costs more than what you likely paid for your first used car. They aren’t produced anymore but can found (in the $4-5K range) at the usual collector spots like Reverb.com and eBay.com


Rolli Seabord Block, $299

Create astonishingly expressive music on a portable, super-powered keyboard. Touch and shape your sound on Seaboard Block’s soft, pressure-responsive musical surface. Play a powerful standalone instrument — and extend its power by connecting to other Blocks.

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88Nine’s 12 Days of Christmas Gift Guide: day four, gifts from etsy made in Milwaukee

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Online marketplace etsy is a great place to find a very random assortment of handmade items.

With a feature to search by city, you can find Milwaukee made goods you didn’t know existed – supporting local while finding something unique!

We scoured the site for you and picked out what we think you and yours will love; all made right here by your neighbors in Milwaukee.

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88Nine’s 12 Days of Christmas Gift Guide: day three, gifts for music lovers

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A Subscription to Vinyl Me, Please ($99-324)

Vinyl, Me Please is a subscription vinyl service. Every month they pick a record that is super choice and do some elaborate design, (which vinyl lovers die for), print it on fun colors (ditto the first parenthesis), and include original artwork (again). It’s a great way to curate a diverse and deep collection for someone who is just getting into music and if the vinyl lover already has the pick of the month, they make for great trade ammo.



88Nine Radio Milwaukee

88Nine’s 12 Days of Christmas Gift Guide: day two, gifts for geeks and nerds

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A VIP Badge to Anime Milwaukee, Feb 16-18 ($150-$200)

If that special someone is into Anime, a VIP badge to Anime Milwaukee would be a perfect gift. Anime Milwaukee is a three-day anime convention that takes place at the Hyatt Regency Hotel and Wisconsin Convention Center in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. The convention celebrates and educates fans about anime, manga, Asian culture, music and gaming.

There are two types of VIP Badges – Regular and Plus. The regular VIP badge comes with: Special Badge Art, Swag! (Anime Milwaukee T-Shirt, exclusive VIP ONLY lanyard, and some other special goodies that are TBD). In addition to all these awesome items, you get priority seating at all Main Programming Events (Does not include attendee hosted panels/events), and a VIP only autograph session. The VIP Plus includes everything in the regular badge but it includes a VIP Cocktail hour.

88Nine Radio Milwaukee

Introducing the 88Nine’s 12 Days of Christmas Gift Guide

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88Nine Radio Milwaukee

Milwaukee jazz musicians pay tribute to the anime series, Cowboy Bebop

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88Nine Radio Milwaukee

Building community with DIY modular synths in Milwaukee

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Modular synth display at Modular Addict shop in Bay View

Once home to an old school hobby shop, this storefront on Kinnickinnic in Bay View now houses a new type of hobby – everything you need to build a Modular Synthesizer.

The modular synth scene in Milwaukee is growing, with meet-ups and Milwaukee Synth Fest featuring building workshops and live modular synth performances — and this new shop, Modular Addict, is a hub for the movement. The shop is named for a reason; many people who start building modular synths, can’t stop adding to their collections.

We spoke with the owner John, who took his DIY synth obsession out of his basement and into a storefront and online shop, helping other builders feel a sense of community.

We also hear from Jim Schoenecker, musician and organizer of Milwaukee Synth Fest to talk about the growing community of builders and performers of mod synths.

Listen below to hear a conversation and samples of some of the sounds they are making:

88Nine Radio Milwaukee

Viral rap video puts Milwaukee school in National spotlight

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88Nine Radio Milwaukee