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Massachusetts Best Bargains 2012

Massachusetts Best Bargains 2012
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Yankee Magazine‘s 2012 picks for the best bargains in Massachusetts.

Cape Cod Canal Visitors Center, Sandwich
Free exhibits explain how, why, and when the canal was built, but the emphasis is on real-time cameras, radar, and sonar for safe navigation. There are lots of buttons to push, a patrol boat to tour, and a canal-navigation simulator. 60 Ed Moffitt Drive. 508-833-9678;

Casey’s Diner, Natick
One of the earliest Worcester Lunch Car diners still in service, this narrow little 10-stool eatery was built in 1922 and acquired by the Casey family in 1925. They’ve been serving their famous steamed hot dogs ever since. If no stools are available, there’s always the take-out window. Hot dogs: from $2.50. 36 South Ave. 508-655-3761

National Heritage Museum, Lexington
A heartfelt patriotism weaves through every exhibition at this museum, which explores the American experience in all its variety. Changing displays range from artifacts of the Revolution to night photos of classic diners to whimsical cuckoo clocks and other folk art. 30 Marrett Road. 781-861-6559;

Hyannis Public Library Book Sale, Hyannis
This quaint little room with wide-pine floors and an entrance on Main Street was the village’s original library, and it still supports the activities of the modern facility behind it. Stop on summer weekdays for great deals on used books. The best bargains are usually library discards, but this jam-packed shop offers a wide selection of mystery, romance, and general fiction. 401 Main St. 508-775-2280;

Wpa Murals, Gloucester
Gloucester has been a painter’s town for well over a century, and public buildings all over the city once featured murals by some of America’s top artists of the 1930s. Most are gone, but masterworks by Charles Allan Winter (1869-1942) still adorn City Hall. His 1939 City Government and Civic Virtues amount to an extended civics lesson using Gloucesterites as models. City Hall, 9 Dale Ave. 978-281-9781;

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