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One of the northeast's "best small towns" is in Massachusetts, new ranking reveals

Message in a bottle found on Mashpee beach 60 years later
Message in a bottle found on Mashpee beach 60 years later 02:05

MASHPEE - A Massachusetts community has landed on a new ranking of the "best small towns" in the northeastern United States.

Mashpee is fourth on the list voted on by USA Today readers. 

Mashpee has "natural charm"

"In the New England town of Mashpee, Massachusetts, you'll find the scenic Mashpee River Reservation with its many walking trails, as well as four of the largest freshwater ponds on Cape Cod," the newspaper says. "Mashpee seamlessly combines natural charm with cultural significance, and it embraces its Wampanoag roots, encouraging visitors to learn more at the Mashpee Wampanoag Museum."

Coming in ahead of Mashpee was Lambertville, New Jersey in third; runner-up Wellsboro, Pennsylvania and first-place finisher Ohiopyle in Pennsylvania. Montpelier, Vermont was seventh on the list.

To qualify for USA Today's ranking, a town had to have a population under 25,000. A panel selected nominees for the ranking based on scenery, historic charm, cultural attractions and food. 

What to know about Mashpee

Mashpee has a population of about 15,000 according to the latest Census data, but that number swells as visitors flock to Cape Cod during the summer months. Attractions in town include the Mashpee Wampanoag Museum, the Cape Cod Children's Museum and the Mashpee National Wildlife Refuge, which is the second-largest accessible open space on Cape Cod behind the National Seashore.  

According to Zillow, the average Mashpee home is valued at over $679,000 - up 5.1% in the past year. Mashpee High School is ranked 107th among all Massachusetts high schools in the latest U.S. News & World Report rankings

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