Marathon on Monday. This is a special day for runners and those who come out to watch the race. Whether you’re making a loved one happy or just wanting to have a good time, this 26.2 mile course has many great places to catch the action.
To get an expert perspective during the marathon, we spoke with TK Schneider, former communications director of the Boston Athletic Association, about some of the best places to watch the race, from the starting line to the last of Boilston. Alley to the turn.
While you won’t see much running from the starting line, nowhere in the course is there a great combination of buzz, expectation and possibility. If you are going to see a race from Hopkinton, make sure you get there early. The Scandinavian warned that with so many runners coming by bus, it could be a bit crazy. “If you want to get to the starting line, I would recommend parking. Hopkinson State Park.“It’s not too far to North Hopkinton, and spectators can take a shuttle bus to the starting line from there,” Alexander said.
Ashland is a mixed bag. If crowds aren’t your thing, Ashland is one of the easiest places to find a seat. “It’s great if you just want to see the elite run and put yourself in that position,” Scandinere said. “You can see them all soon.” But Ashland will not be a Scandinavian choice for a number of reasons: it is about a mile from the Ashland passenger train stop, and while it will not be crowded for spectators, it will be for racers. “If you’re looking for someone in particular, it can be difficult,” Scandrian said. “At this point in the race, the runners are very close to each other.”
Unlike Ashland, Framingham has a healthy number of spectators, and it is close to the Framingham passenger train stop. “Framingham station is around the 10K mark,” said Scandinere. Will have a chance to see again below. “
The closer you get to the finish line, the bigger the crowd at each town hub. Crowds at the Natak Center, 10 miles away, are a fun, flying flag, while the West Natak rail stop is quieter and more remote, and will allow you to stand longer. Whichever you choose, the Scandinavian said, “Remember that all passengers are on the north side of the train station course.” “If you have any plans to meet your loved one, let them know you’re on the left side of the road,” Scandinere said. “Even at a distance of 10 miles, it can be difficult for runners and supporters to find each other.”
The Wellesley Square passenger train stop drops you off right in the middle of town. Just halfway through the race, this is a good place to send some excitement before approaching the finish line. If you want to experience the famous Wellesley College Scream Tunnel, head about a mile west of the Wellesley Square stop. The great thing about Wellesley is that if you take the right time you can get back on the passenger train and Take a yak ride in Kenmore Square. “The bad news is, you miss Newton and the Brooklyn line.” Which brings us
Newton / Heartbreak Hill.
If there’s one section of the course where racers need encouragement, it’s Newton Hills, which starts at 17 miles and ends between 20 and 21 miles just before Boston College. If you want to start the hard times, go to the D branch of the Green Line and board the Woodland stop. Even better, if you walk half a mile east, “Woodland is the only Newton fire station,” Scandinavian said. “This is the first turn of the course, off Route 16 and towards Commonwealth Avenue. It’s a great place to give runners one last push of encouragement before starting the first of the four hills.”
If you are determined to check out a quick stretch of the Heartbreak Hills, you can take the D-Branch of the Green Line to Newton Center and walk 12 minutes to Commonwealth Avenue, but a more spectator-friendly place. Boston is far from college. Stop at B branch. “The runners are just tearing up the last part of the Heartbreak Hills, so this is a really good place,” Scandinere said. “The B-line may take a while, but the whole BC campus area is beautiful, and there are more restaurants than in the first part of the course.”
One advantage of the Cleveland Circle is that it is accessible from the B, C and D branches of the Green Line. (The Cleveland Circle stop on C-Branch brings you closer, but since fewer stops exit Boston, D-Branch is recommended.) No matter how many trains you take, the crowd is quite thick. Will be. “Starting at the Cleveland Circle, it’s a long tunnel of loud joy for the rest of the race,” Scandinere said. “Crowds are jumping through the Brookline, especially Cleveland Circle and College Corner. It’s an amazing energy.”
Runners approaching Kenmore Square can see the Setgo sign growing up, pointing them forward. Once they get there, the spirit of the fans is either heading to or leaving the Red Sox game, making Kenmore a big party. “If you can find a good place in this last mail, you will have a great time,” said Scandinere. “Besides, you’ve got the Boston Strong Bridge, which is a really special place.”
If you’re ready to watch the last part of the race along Boleston Street, be prepared for the big crowd. Also, don’t be fooled by your GPS: Although the Kopli Green Line stop usually takes you to the finish line, it closes on the day of the race, which means you should board the Hynes stop. “If you can handle a crowd of well-wishers, it’s worth checking out,” said the Scandinavian. “Both last turns, towards Harford and Boleston Street, are special,” Alexander said. “Once people take the last turn towards Boyleston, they get stuck. It’s an emotional place.”
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