Navarre Beach Fire Rescue firefighters and lifeguards put together the 3-foot by 2-foot boxes made of recycled material and placed them on the beach Wednesday. The Santa Rosa County Tourist Development Office funded the project.

NAVARRE BEACH — Families packed down with wagons loaded with stuff for a day at beach can cross beach toys for their children to build sand castles off their checklist.

For the first time this past weekend, white toy boxes sat full of plastic buckets, shovels and rakes at the end of six dune walkovers east of Navarre Beach Pier.

Navarre Beach Fire Rescue firefighters and lifeguards put together the 3-foot by 2-foot boxes made of recycled material and placed them on the beach Wednesday. The Santa Rosa County Tourist Development Office funded the project.

Jenelle Smith was unaware of the Navarre Beach toy boxes, but said she liked the idea as she watched her 3-year-old daughter Avery shovel white sand into a bright orange pail.

“It’s nice to have something like that in case you forget your toys or they get swept away by waves,” said a pregnant Smith, who will soon have another baby girl.

Her husband, Dan, said he sees boogie boards stuffed in the beach's trash bins all the time.

“If you’re just on vacation you can let someone else use them instead of wasting them,” he said.

Navarre Beach Fire Rescue Beach Safety Director Austin Turnbull first saw toy boxes on a beach in Texas. He said visitors and locals can take advantage of the beach toys. He also wants to expand toy boxes on the west side of the pier placed behind the high-rise condos.

“This is the first weekend we’ve had them,” Turnbull said. “I see it catching on soon. We’ll be clearing out the toy boxes because they’ve gotten so full.”

Lifeguard Aaron Telatovich said his three boys, who range in age from 3 to 10, will use them. A lifeguard for 18 years, he said abandoned toys and umbrellas can create a hazard for sea turtles and other beach wildlife.

“This is a beach where people give back,” Telatovich said. “It creates a greater sense of community.”

Meanwhile, 6-year-old LillyAnn and 4-year-old sister Lyla had a blast on the beach, splashing in the waves, picking up seashells and putting them in their beach bucket.

Their mom, Jacqueline Glowa, and dad, Ian, brought them out for a fun day at the beach.

“It’s pretty cool they have stuff out here for the kids,” Jacqueline said.