Winner: Paragon Carousel
Runner-Up: Scituate Lighthouse
Built in 1928, the Paragon Carousel has been operating by the shore of Nantasket Beach for 95 years. Once part of the amusement mecca known as Paragon Park, it is one of the last remaining grand carousels in the United States. The ride is filled to the rafters with nostalgia and features 66 intricately carved wooden horses and two rare Roman Chariots, which have all been carefully restored to their former glory by restoration curator James Hardison. Taking a spin on this antique carousel has become a summertime tradition for many families. The Carousel is a non-profit and is funded through grants as well as proceeds from the Carousel Creamery, located inside the Clock Tower building next door. Order a summer snack or ice cream cone as you leave and help keep the ride going for future generations.
Winner: Nantasket Beach
Runner-Up: Rexhame Beach
Calm, clear water and miles of fine sand make Nantasket Beach ideal for walkers, sunbathers, and families with young children. The best time to visit is at low tide, when there’s plenty of space to park beach chairs and build sandcastles. Located adjacent to Nantasket Avenue, the beach is within walking distance of great restaurants and family-friendly attractions. Young kids will enjoy taking a ride on the historic Paragon Carousel, while older kids will want to visit the arcade and mini golf at Paragon Boardwalk (parents can kick back at the onsite beer garden). Nantasket Beach is also a favorite for beginner surfers. Northeast Surfing has a mobile surf shop right on the beach where you can rent a board or sign up for lessons and surfing camps for kids.
Winner: Gallery Nantasket Fine Art and Craft
Runner-Up: Afterglow Fine Art Gallery (Kjeld Mahoney Photography)