Hot stuff

May 19, 2006|By MICHAEL BARNETT | MICHAEL BARNETT,SUN REPORTER

It's almost that time of year again, when we trade in work clothes and spring jackets for bathing suits and sunscreen. Here's a look at some of this year's hot beach essentials - to make your time in the sand a little more exciting.

Ultimate Beach Ball Sprinkler

Manufacturer: Little Tikes / Price: $14.99 from Amazon.com.

This sprinkler is inflatable so it is easy to take anywhere. Attach a hose and it's a sprinkler. Turn off the water, and you have a giant beach ball.

Waterball Launcher Water Gun

Manufacturer: Wild Planet Toys / Price: $27.99 from Spilsbury.com.

A welcome break from the same old water pistols and Super Soakers, the Waterball Launcher is a safe alternative for water-gun fights. Instead of shooting rapid beams of water, kids shoot rapid water bubbles at targets up to 20 feet away.

Silicon iPod caseManufacturer: ifrogz / Price: $24 from ifrogz.com.

This sleek silicon case helps protect your portable music and video player from water, sand and heat. You can customize colors and designs for no extra charge, and the case is available for all iPod models.

Mini Misting Fan

Manufacturer: The Sharper Image / Price: $12.95 from the Sharper Image.

When the sun is just too sweltering, this 4-inch fan helps cool you off with a misty breeze. It comes with a key-chain clip for easy portability.

UV Detector

Manufacturer: Club Champ / Price: $59.99 from Modell's.

You can never be too careful when it comes to skin care. This nifty gadget tells you what kind of SPF sunscreen you need and which times of day are safe for sun exposure. It also gives UVA, UVB and UVI readings when in the sun.

iPod Nano Armband

Manufacturer: Apple / Price: $29 from apple.com.

For those who enjoy a long walk, or jog, on the beach, this armband for the iPod Nano lets you bring your music with you.

michael.barnett@baltsun.com

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