When I was a kid, my grandparents had a boat that they docked in Rhode Island. My family would visit and we’d hang out on the docked boat or go on little boating adventures on the Narragansett Bay. I marveled at the novelty of being, “entrusted,” with a moment of, “control,” over the helm. When docked at the marina, I took great joy in feeding the resident (jerk) swan flock fistfuls of Cheerios. I can’t recall ever visiting the area’s beaches, though.
Last weekend, languishing with a mouthful of gauze while flicking through Google Now cards on my phone, I was presented a headline about the town of Narragansett. Initially confused, I realized it was due to my interest in sun safety. Apparently, the small town has installed sunscreen dispensers. Even better, they are free for beach-goers to use!
What?! This is a thing?! (I don’t get out much – my area doesn’t have these.)
Sunscreen Dispensers in Narragansett, RI.
How cool is that?! The sunscreen dispensers are paired with signage that features application instructions, sponsorship information of a local business that helped fund the installation and maintenance of the dispensers, as well as a mirror.
As it happens, they aren’t the pioneers. Some hasty Googling lead me to find that New York City has placed 100 dispensers across 27 locations including beaches and even a fishing pier. Miami Beach did it a couple years ago! In 2015, they installed 50 dispensers at beaches, pools, and parks. Other areas have, too.
It’s an awesome public service. I love the example Narragansett, NYC, and Miami Beach are setting in regards to sun safety. Even if you didn’t use what was provided, simply seeing the dispensers is a good enough reminder to apply and reapply at the beach. I hope that more areas (not just beaches) follow suit to help encourage good sun protection habits; I’d love to see them paired with water fountains.