How We’re Commemorating the Boston Marathon from Quarantine

Treadmill races? Why not! The marathon may be postponed, but fans aren't letting this day pass by unacknowledged.

Boston Marathon registration

Photo by Simone Migliori

Of all the days we’ve passed in our coronavirus shutdown, it’s safe to say that today hits particularly hard. On Patriots’ Day, Bostonians should be shaking cowbells at strangers, writing quippy signs, and proposing to each other on Boylston Street—but instead, we’re all trapped inside as the Boston Marathon has, for the first time ever, been postponed to September. However, that doesn’t mean that Patriots’ Day will pass by as just another day in quarantine. To paraphrase the wise words of one notable Bostonian, even in the throes of COVID-19, this is our fucking city, and a pandemic can’t keep us from honoring Boston’s beloved day. Below, see the ways that some locals (and some runners from afar) are commemorating Patriots’ Day from a safe social distance.

While Mayor Marty Walsh strongly discouraged everyone from running the Boston Marathon route, many runners took to safer routes to get their 26.2 miles in.

@sydbrackett3Boston marathon got postponed so created my own 26.2 baby ✔️ ##bostonmarathon ##fyp ##foryou♬ Sunset Lover – Petit Biscuit

Some even took extra precautions by not going outdoors at all, and instead taking to their treadmill.

Marathon runners from all over the country joined in to honor the day.


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My heart is in Boston today while my body stays home in Chicago 💙💛 still, the Boston spirit lives on and today that took the form of a unicorn on my run. I mapped this out a week ago and it was 5 miles long, which is coincidentally the exact distance my coach scheduled me to run today. I think the unicorn magic is alive and well and I can’t wait for the day we get to ride the bus up to Hopkinton, run through the Wellesley scream tunnel, crest Heartbreak Hill, and turn right on Hereford and left onto Boylston into the finish again. For now, I’ll keep having fun on the run and remembering why I love this sport so much 🦄 . . . . #patriotsday #bostonmarathon #ibelieveinunicorns #runnersofinstagram #boston #chasingunicorns #runlove

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While running really far is certainly an apt way to pay tribute to Marathon Monday, some are commemorating the day in more symbolic ways. Since 2014, Marathon Daffodils has lined the Marathon route with daffodils to honor those who lost their lives in the bombings in 2013. Today’s daffodils instead went to local hospitals.

Even Boston’s statues are getting in the spirit. 

And of course, there are plenty of good boys (including Spencer the Marathon Dog) who wouldn’t let this day go by unacknowledged. 

If you’re now inspired to launch your own Patriots’ Day celebration at home, get in the spirit by turning on WBZ and NBC Sports, which are both streaming reruns of races past (see the full schedule here). And revisit all our coverage of last year’s event here. Happy marathoning!