Thank you for bringing back so many memories of Paragon Park. I grew up in
Hull in the '70s and '80s as a year-round resident, and seeing all the
pictures on your website, as well as your videos on YouTube (which is how I
found your site), was a wonderful reminder of just how special a place
Let me also say that I think you're an awesome story teller! The way you
write about spending your summers in Hull as a child really brings the whole
experience to life. Your stories are as vivid as the pictures on your
I was intrigued to read your post on the Seaglass page, under the heading
"July 2006", where you talk about how Hull has become like a ghost town. I
noticed that too, during "the summer after" the park closed. Nantasket was
always a ghost town in the winter, but from Memorial Day to Labor Day, it
just came right to life, like a flower blooming in the spring. But that
summer, I rode my bike down to where the park used to be (or maybe I walked
- I forget), and I experienced the same eerie feeling that you wrote about.
I was used to Nantasket having its usual festive atmosphere in the summer
months, but now, the whole place seemed quiet, even if there were some
people walking along the boardwalk or Nantasket Ave. Gone was the
carnival-like music, the game operators shouting out to the passers-by, the
hydraulic sounds that some of the rides made, the clickety-clack of the
Comet making its ascent up its long incline, and the roaring sound it made
with all the joyous screams as it raced down the other side of that incline.
And in its place was a desolate construction site. I don't think that Hull
has been the same since.
Today , Hull is more gentrified, but much of its spirit is gone. It just
doesn't seem like the same town that I grew up in, at least not in the
Nantasket section. But at least I can be thankful of your website, with all
its pictures and stories.
As for me, I don't think I went to Paragon nearly as many times as you did.
It was probably because I lived in Hull year-round, and so I just sort of
took it for granted. Like the beach, it was something that was just always
there. Now that it's gone, I wish I had appreciated it more, and gone there
But I did go to the park on many occasions. In the last couple of years of
the park's life, my father and I used to play mini-golf there all the time.
Once, when the Great Coaster was roaring past us, I put my hand on one of
the coaster's support beams, and I remember thinking how cool it was to feel
the rumbling sensation! I also used to enjoy the Kooky Kastle and bumper
cars. I can still smell the ozone and hear the sparks that those cars made
as their power rods would slide along the ceiling. When I was a real little
kid, my favorite ride was the beep-beep cars, the ones that went around in a
circle under the red, blue, and yellow umbrella near the entrance of the
park. In fact, as I write this, a memory just came back to me! I can now
remember the steering wheels in those cars. They were made of a strong,
heavy metal, and they were loosely secured onto their axles with a nut.
Because they were on kind of loose, they made a rumbling sound whenever you
"steered" them. Also, if I remember correctly, the shape of the steering
wheel in some cars was round, and in others it was somewhat rectangular.
It's great how just writing about this magical place is bringing back
detailed memories of it!
I also used to enjoy going into the arcades. My favorite game was skee
ball. In fact, I still have a bunch of skee ball tickets that I won the
last year the park was open, and I saved them as souvenirs. If you'd like
me to mail you a couple of them, let me know. I've got plenty to spare!
By the way, you might be interested to know that although I grew up on
Touraine Ave and Samoset Ave, which are in completely different sections
from where you spent your summers on Sagamore Hill, a little more than ten
years ago, my mother moved right around the corner from you, on Fairmount
Way. Hull certainly is a small town!
Well, thank you again for all the work that you put into your website. I
really enjoy reading all the stories from you and the visitors.