The best roadside attractions in each New England state, according to USA Today

The pick for Massachusetts involves ponies. Lots of ponies.

PEZ Visitor Center in Connecticut.
The PEZ Visitor Center in Connecticut. –Doug Kerr / flickr

Experts say travelers are staying closer to home this summer due to the coronavirus pandemic, which likely means plenty of road trips. On Tuesday, USA Today released a list of best roadside attractions in each state.

“With the popularity of road tripping and RV travel on the rise, we’ve decided to take a closer look at the American institution that is roadside attractions by highlighting one in each state,” the publication wrote.

Here are USA Today’s picks for all six New England states.

PEZ Visitor Center in Connecticut. —Doug Kerr / flickr

Connecticut: PEZ Visitor Center

“Stop at the PEZ Visitor Center in Orange to see the world’s largest collection of PEZ memorabilia in a 4,000-square-foot facility,” USA Today wrote. “Highlights include the world’s largest PEZ dispenser, a motorcycle from Orange County Choppers built entirely of PEZ and a viewing area where you can watch PEZ production in real time.”

The Desert of Maine. —File

Maine: Desert of Maine

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“Outside of the coastal town of Freeport, you’ll find some 40 acres of sand dunes and silt, known as the Desert of Maine,” USA Today wrote. “This oddity was the result of poor crop rotation that made the land unfarmable. While not a true desert (the area gets too much rainfall to qualify), the reverse oasis brings in tends of thousands of visitors each year who come to walk in the sand and snap a photo with the fiberglass camel.”

Massachusetts: Ponyhenge

“A pasture outside of Lincoln, Massachusetts is home to a growing herd of old rocking horses and plastic ponies,” USA Today wrote. “No one is sure when or why the first horse arrived, but it was sometime around 2010. One soon became two, then several. Today, Ponyhenge continues to grow and evolve, so it never looks the same way twice.”

Chutters Candy Store in New Hampshire. —BEV Norton / flickr

New Hampshire: Chutters Candy Store

“Stock up on road trip treats at the World’s Longest Candy Counter in Littleton, New Hampshire,” USA Today wrote. “The Chutters candy counter features more than 500 types of sweet treats, from gummy bears and jelly beans to fudge and chocolate.”

Big Blue Bug Solutions rooftop mascot is wearing a mask in response to the coronavirus pandemic. —Matthew J. Lee / The Boston Globe

Rhode Island: Big Blue Bug

“In 1980, New England Pest Control moved into a new building in Providence along I-95 and decided to put a steel and fiberglass Eastern Subterranean Termite on their roof,” USA Today wrote. “This 58-foot-long, 4,000-pound Big Blue Bug (which the business was later named after) was originally painted purple, but sun exposure eventually faded it to blue.”

Sculptor Jim Sardonis watched as “Whale Dance” was installed in Vermont last year. —James M. Patterson /The Valley News via AP

Vermont: Whale Dance

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“Artist Jim Sardonis designed and installed a pair of whale tails off Interstate 89 in 1989,” USA Today wrote. “The original pair were moved to South Burlington in 1999, and a new pair, called Whale Dance, were created to replace them in 2019. Fossils of ancient beluga whales have been found throughout Vermont, which was underwater during the Paleozoic Era.”

Check out the entire list of best roadside attractions in each state.

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