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COVID Makes Patriots Day 2021 Another Marathon-Less Monday in Boston

NBC Boston logo NBC Boston 4/19/2021 Asher Klein and John Moroney
a group of people walking down the street: People take part in a Boston Marathon ceremony at the race’s traditional finish line on Monday, April 19, 2021. © Provided by NBC Boston

People take part in a Boston Marathon ceremony at the race’s traditional finish line on Monday, April 19, 2021.

Another Patriots Day arrived in Massachusetts without the running of the Boston Marathon, though there were a few ways that people around the area marked the occasion anyway.

With the marathon postponed until October, the second year the pandemic interfered with the legendary race, organizers instead held a Patriots Day Mile on Monday, in which runners, walkers, beginners or novices were encouraged to run a mile. As part of the day's activities, a few frontline workers, joined by 2018 champion Des Linden, even broke a ceremonial ribbon at the race's traditional finish line on Boylston Street.

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"It's a great moment to share with these guys, but also for the city, for the race, for the community. I think we're headed in the right direction, and that feels great," Linden said.

Linden plans to compete when the 125-year-old race is actually held this year, on October 11.

But for those looking to celebrate earlier, the race's organizer, the Boston Athletic Association, launched a special 125th anniversary jacket for the race, coming out May 7.

Other runners took to the 26.2 mile route anyway on Monday, as did a group that walked from Hopkinton to Boston to honor fallen soldiers.

Instead of tens of thousands of athletes at the race's start at Hopkinton Town Common, there was heavy equipment at Hopkinton Town Common. And there was lots of disappointment along the route.

"A lot of businesses downtown miss the opportunity to make some money on a nice day like today," said Tony Matarazzo, owner of Hopkinton restaurant Lola's Italian Kitchen.

But there was also a ceremonial toast about noon at the finish line, with the launch of Born 2 Run beer by Vermont's Whetstone Craft Beers. Proceeds of the blood orange gose's sales will benefit the Born to Run Foundation, which gave a running blade to the brewery's cofounder, David Hiler.

The foundation donates prosthetic athletic equipment to help young people lead active lives.

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