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Day Trips Around Boston
Life is a Merry-Go-Round at Nantasket Beach in Hull, MA

Photo of carousel at Nantasket Beach Hull, MA

Article and photos by Eric H.

For lovers of amusement parks, Paragon Park was  a
"winner every time," providing the perfect mix of amusement rides, carnival barkers persuading us to play their games, miniature golf, and a great diversity of junk food, all right along one of New England's best stretches of beach, Nantasket Beach in Hull, MA.

When Paragon Park closed in 1984, many of us found no "amusement" in its cold and heartless conversion to condo development.  Today, the only remnants of Paragon Park  are a clock tower and carousel, the latter thankfully kept alive by the Friends of the Paragon Carousel, Inc.  The  carousel is a beauty -- a wonderfully restored, well-maintained merry-go-round from 1928 featuring 24 restored shiny horses and a Wurlitzer band organ that generates the familiar carnival music. Sadly, it's the only carousel left in the Boston area, but happily, one that still brings a festive quality of life to an area that does seem to be rebounding a bit with good dining and lodging options -- and of, course, that magnificent beach that will most likely, never be taken away from us Bostonians.

The combination of a merry-go-round and fanstastic beach (with a bathhouse, restrooms and lifeguards on duty from late June to early September) might not have the total youthful essence package of Paragon Park, but it's certainly a worthy contender in the top things to see and do list in the Boston area, here in the 21st century.  

Photo of Nantasket Beach, Hull, MA
The great stretch of beach at Nantasket

Editor's note: The Carousel is open until September, (with limited hours into October). For more information, please visit the Friends of the Paragon Carousel Web Site.

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