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Hey, Carl Craft here, and I love the beach.  I love that the beach makes a great day for people of all ages.  When I was young and single, it was my spot for beach volleyball all day and deciding who’s back porch we’d be partying on later that day.  Now, as a dad, it’s a free form of great nature and entertainment for me and my kids.  My boys love swimming, body surfing, sandcastles, and finding all kinds of cool sea life that you can see at any of our local beaches.  And if I can get a game of volleyball in as well, then all the better.  Sure, the beach costs something to get on, and we all have an opinion on the cost of the season and daily beach badges… but for kids:  it’s free.

But, sometimes the beach can be a pain in the ass.  Let’s face it.  The sand presents problems.  But if you’re prepared with some great, simple things… then your beach day will be tons better.  I put together this list of things that I think help my beach day go smoother.

Pole-R Ber Umbrella Hooks 

umbrella hooks

These hooks will turn the pole for your umbrella into a place that you can hang stuff, like your beach bag, your purse, anything that you want easy access, and as a bonus, the hooks keep your stuff out of the sand.

Get these now on Amazon.

Beach Wind Screen

multi-colored beach wind screen

Nothing ruins an awesome beach day like too much wind.  A strong wind can turn a decent beach day into a sand-blasted nightmare.  That’s why you need a wind screen.  And, as an added tip, you’ll need a light mallet to drive the stakes into the sand.

Order one here.

Mallet with Tent Peg Remover

mallet with Tent Peg RemoverLike I said, you’ll want to get a mallet to hold down your wind screen and this one is multi-purpose. This mallet also has a spot for you to be able to remove the pegs from the sand so you don’t have to spend time digging deep to pull them up.

Get one on Amazon.

Binoculars  

binoculars

Binoculars.  Say what?  Are you some kind of perve looking at hot girls and guys on the beach?  No, not at all!  You’re gonna need these binoculars so that you can see the wildlife that is swimming right past you.  While you’re at the beach here at The Jersey Shore, TONS of whales, sharks (eeek!), pods of dolphins, and birds sometimes go right past you and you don’t even notice!  Get a cheap, but decent, pair of binoculars and you’ll be able to see that whale breach the surface of the ocean up close, without even leaving your beach chair.

Grab a pair here.

Umbrella Table Tray 

umbrella cupholder and table stand
Umbrella pole table.  Like the hooks mentioned above, this thing is so usable, especially if you’ve got kids running around to need a sand-free place to put their cold drinks.

Buy it here.

Beach & Sports Cabana 

beach cabana

Tent with cabana feel.  A lot of beaches these days don’t even allow tents.  Why?  Because depending on where you’re set up a tent could block the view of emergency personnel who are responding to a tragic event like a drowning or sand collapse and every moment matters.  But, beaches with those regulations tend to allow things like this.

Snag this from Amazon.

Eyewear Retainer

eyewear retainer
Hey, you like those expensive sunglasses you have?  Want to keep them from falling off in the water?  Say no more. I use these every time I’m at the beach. I love playing beach volleyball (shout out to my peeps at 5th Ave in Belmar and Bradley Beach!) and I’d never keep my shades on my face without a good pair of Croakies.

Get a pair on Amazon.

Utility Wagon 

blue utility wagon

Of course, all of this stuff is impossible to lug around.  Some of us are lucky enough to have a beach locker at our favorite local beach. But if you don’t you need something that can easily handle getting this stuff on and off the beach. I’ve seen this one used by a lot of people and they really appreciate the big wheels and space.  Plus it folds for when you have to stuff it back in the car. 

Order it here.

Sunscreen Lotion

baby sunscreen

Yes, of course, you need sunscreen.  1000%.  But early in the season, you need something that is almost a paint primer, especially for areas that haven’t seen the sun since forever. This stuff meant for baby and young kid’s skin will totally protect you in the early trips.  After that, get your tan lines going!

Buy a few bottles here.

Please note that items are in stock and prices are accurate at the time we published this list. Have an idea for a fun theme for a gift idea list you’d like us to create?  Drop us a line at shopping@bbgi.com.

Carl Craft is studying here on earth for a short time and trying to make the most of it... with varying amounts of success. He's heard every morning on The Morning Rat Race. Sometimes he goes, "sock / shoe, sock / shoe" which we think is a sign of some kind of psychosis...