What to bring to the beach in Chicago

Make the most of sunny weekends in the city with these new must-have items that are perfect for a day at the beach
Sunny Life MP3
Photograph: Courtesy of Shop Art Effect Sunny Life MP3
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Summer isn’t over, folks. And we refuse to believe there aren’t many more bright days ahead—so full of sunshine that you may even need a new pair of sunglasses. But before you hit the sand or hop on a boat, we think a little local shopping is in order, and we’ve found some of the best new products to bring to one of Chicago’s beaches, or even one of summer’s best street festivals. Check out our list to make a hot day by the lake a little cooler.

RECOMMENDED: Our complete guide to summer in Chicago

Photograph: Courtesy of Windward Boardshop

It’s not quite football season, but it’s never too early to show off your true colors—blue and orange, of course.  

Happy Hour Da Bears sunglasses, Windward Board Shop, $19.99, at windwardboardshop.com

Photograph: Courtesy of Neighborly Shop

Why are so many beach towels so boring? Have a little pride and wrap yourself in the Great Lakes.

Ork Great Lakes beach towel, $35, at neighborlyshop.com
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Photograph: Courtesy of BucketFeet

Hey there, Sweet Feet. Let the tropics come to you with this pair of pineapple-inspired kicks.

Slip On Pineappleade Gold sneakers, $78, at bucketfeet.com
Sunny Life MP3
Photograph: Courtesy of Shop Art Effect

Pump up the jams and let the summer celebration begin, because this retro radio plugs right into your smartphone. Don’t forget your AA batteries!

MP3 radio, $38, at shoparteffect.com
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Photograph: Courtesy of Neighborly Shop

Lay it all out there—for a picnic, that is. This carryall meets blanket suits your spontaneous style. Keep it packed for your next outing, unzip and voila—picnic blanket!

Yield Design Co. picnic bag, $65, at neighborlyshop.com
Dry Spell Beach Phone Bag
Photograph: Courtesy of Art Effect

Calling all iPhone addicts, you need this waterproof bag. You know you’re going to take your phone to the beach, maybe even on a boat out into the lake. This handy little guy will help you keep it dry—and sand-free—while you Instagram your adventures.

Dry Spell Water Defender Bag by Tech Candy, $18, at arteffect.com
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Photograph: Courtesy of Everything But Water

This pouch screams summer—literally. Throw in your makeup, keys, suncreen, wallet and phone, head to the beach, and make a statement.

Macbeth Collection pouch, $27, at everythingbutwater.com
Splash Box Kids
Photograph: Courtesy of Kiefer

The kids deserve to have some fun in the sun too. Your little one will learn to swim in no time with this kit, complete with swim belt, fishtail fins and swim cap.

Kiefer Kids Splash Box, $39.99, at kiefer.com
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Cabo Beach Tote & Mat
Photograph: Courtesy of Comfort Me Boutique

You can rest easy knowing you didn’t forget the big stuff with this simple, versatile bag and beach mat, all rolled into one.

Cabo beach tote and mat, $32, at comfortmeboutique.com
Eliza Gran Hats
Photograph: Courtesy Penelope's

What whimsical style you have! Turn heads and show off your quirky sensibility when you don a one-of-a-kind, handmade straw hat with oversized pom-poms.

Eliza Gran Pom Pom hat, $58, at shoppenelopes.com
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