Athletic excellence has always been an American tradition, and there are few athletic traditions older than the marathon. The Boston Athletic Association has managed this competition since 1897, making 2017 race the 120th anniversary of the Boston Marathon. Will you be a part of it?
An Event to Remember
The very first Boston Marathon in April 1897 had only 18 participants. Since then, it has grown to an average of over 30,000, with the largest (record-breaking) attendance happening during the Centennial Marathon in 1996: a whopping 38,708.
Those wishing to participate in the race must be 18 or older and meet the qualifying standards of the race; namely, to complete a standard recognized marathon course eighteen months prior to the Boston event. The course must be finished according to a timetable, which varies by age and sex.
When Is the Boston Marathon Held?
The Marathon is traditionally held on Patriot’s Day, a Massachusetts state holiday held on the third Monday in April (also known as “Marathon Monday.” Patriot’s Day commemorates the battles of Lexington and Concord, the initial battles of the Revolutionary War, and elsewhere in Massachusetts, re-enactors retrace the “midnight ride” of Paul Revere.
In 2017, the Marathon will be held on Monday, April 17. 2018’s Marathon will be held on April 16, 2019’s on April 15, and 2020’s on April 20.
The race course itself is 26 miles 365 yards long (or 42,195 meters) and follows an historic course that leads through the center of Boston, including a grueling and difficult stretch through Heartbreak Hill near Boston College.
Did You Know?
- The Boston Marathon is the oldest continuously running marathon in the world, and the second-longest running footrace in America, beaten only by the Buffalo Turkey Trot.
- Originally, the Boston Marathon was a small local event, and the only prize was an olive wreath. But cash awards and corporate sponsorship began in 1986.
- Koreans were denied entry into the Marathon in 1951, due to the president of the BAA’s feelings on the Korean war,
- Women were not officially allowed to enter the Marathon until 1972. A famous scandal occurred in 1967 when Katherine Switzer raced with a marathon number and a race official attempted to eject her from the race. The incident led to those women who finished the race unofficially being retroactively recognized as champions in 1996.
Watching the Race
Over half million spectators come to watch the Marathon every year, making it one of the most-watched sporting events in the world. There is even a quarter-mile stretch at Wellesley college known as the “Scream Tunnel,” where students offer cheers, screams, and kisses to the beleaguered runners as they pass by.
As you might expect, getting to and from the Marathon can be challenging on race day, especially for a large group. That’s where a company like Metropolitan Shuttle comes in. A minibus for up to thirty people, or a charter bus for up to sixty people, can transport your group to the starting line with ease. We specialize in planning and scheduling transportation needs for major events just like the Boston Marathon. If you’re interested in being part of Boston history this year, call us at 1-866-556-3545 or contact us today for a free quote, and let’s get started!