Why 2021 Boston Marathon Won’t Take Place In April On Patriots’ Day

The COVID-19 pandemic forces another departure from tradition

For the second consecutive year, Patriots’ Day in Boston won’t be as festive as normal.

The Boston Athletic Association announced Wednesday the 2021 Boston Marathon won’t take place on Patriots’ Day, its traditional date. The BAA decided to postpone the race until at least the fall due to ongoing COVID-19 concerns.

“With fewer than six months until Patriots’ Day and with road races prohibited until Phase 4 of the Massachusetts reopening plan, we are unable to host the Boston Marathon this coming April,” B.A.A. CEO Tom Grilk said. “By shifting our focus to a fall date, we can continue to work with stakeholders to adjust the in-person experience for runners and supporters alike. Prioritizing the safety of participants, volunteers, spectators, and community members, we continue to assess all elements of the race including a potential reduced field size or weekend date.”

Grilk believes whenever the Boston Marathon does take place, the event will prove its status as one of the region’s most beloved sporting events.

“We are optimistic that the Boston Marathon will continue its tradition of celebrating the spirit of community and athletic excellence next fall. We know there will be many questions and we will look to address them in the coming months ahead,” he said.

The BAA cancelled the live running of the 2020 Boston Marathon, instead staging it as a virtual race. Runners everywhere presumably hope that won’t be the case in 2021.

Thumbnail photo via Brian Fluharty/USA TODAY Sports Images

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