This is so simple, easy, and inexpensive. The sand pails with the flags cost two dollars to make, because the flag toothpicks and the miniature pails came from the Dollar Store. I filled the pails with Kosher salt with a sprinkle of pink Himalayan salt on top. I also experimented with rice, but the salt looked most like sand. If I had small children or a large dog, I would of chosen something like cornmeal or sugar.
It took about five minutes to make these. For a more formal setting, one could use them as place settings with a name tag attached or written directly on the pail with a sharpie.