help_outline Skip to main content

News / Articles

2020 Boston Marathon Goes Virtual

Wendy Crink Madden  | Published on 9/27/2020

Boston (virtual) Marathon 2020 - “The Only Thing Real Is The Miles”.  Or was it? -Wendy Madden

Boston 2020 - the year of the awesome color combination for the Celebration Jacket!  The year of the relatively mild winter for training.  The year of the Pandemic.  ( cue tires screeching to a halt!) 

While the Boston Marathon didn’t go off exactly as planned this year, there are a number of BQ-ers (Boston Qualifiers) and MVS “time-waived” bib receivers from our club who continued to log miles and train despite the disappointment and uncertainty of things beyond running.

Charged with writing this piece for our newsletter, I reached out to those who were involved in the virtual Boston to give me a few words describing their experiences.   I was honored to receive so many responses!   I will bullet point some of the highlights of what our fellow Striders had to say about their experiences, however, I encourage you to read each submission here.  These submissions are heartfelt and the response to volunteer for the “run” at the Bruce Freeman Rail Trail and other locations to support fellow runners was phenomenal!  To start with one of our runner’s quotes;

 “ After over 5 months of wondering if doing this race virtually was a good call, I have to give a resounding YES! This Boston Marathon experience was so much more. This Boston was more than the miles. It was about friendships, camaraderie, mental toughness, and positivity.  Thank you Boston!  You did not disappoint.”  - Norma Defusco-King


  • “...9 months of I’ve never been fitter” - Tom Dolan

  • “...I dedicated all those miles to a good wish and we will overcome any difficulty.”  Lanshan Cao

  • “While I missed the excitement of the ‘real’ Boston, I loved how we set up our MVS virtual Boston.  I was able to see everyone running the course and stopped at the water stops to say hi, grab a water, take pictures etc.  It was so much fun.”  - Maura Szenday

  • September 12, 2020.  The great Bruce Freeman Rail Trail Marathon will live in infamy as my FIRST marathon!” - Wendy Madden


  • I had planned to start at 7am but got the call in the middle of the night that my daughter in law was in labor and just as I was about to start I got the call that the baby was born! It was definitely a little extra pep in my step. - Colleen Sousa

  • “...but having to serve as Race Director was not fun ;) “  - Josh Giles

  • “The whole marathon flew by faster than I realized and I was just so grateful for the good company and bad jokes.” - Billy Hafferty

  • “ I would do it again in a heartbeat.” - Sharon Johnson

  • “ lucky to have running and all of the goodness that comes with it...amazing volunteers who made it special!” - Jocelyn Cascio

  • “ was the most special marathon I have ever run...seeing grandparents, mom, Dustin, kids...amazing volunteers...MVS thanks for the experience, I’ll never forget it!” - Liz MacIver

  • “ Honestly, I had low expectations for this marathon...wasn’t excited...the experience on “race day” was much more...than I anticipated...a fun marathon!” - Jenn Curro

  • “I know a lot of people decided that it was not a “real” race, but I decided I would still take it seriously...on vacation the week of the marathon...With the support of my wife Karen and son Greg feeding me and watering me every four miles, I ran the loneliest marathon of my life... I guess the lack of distractions was not really a problem as I ran an 11 year PR.” - Tom Kinneman

  • “...but for now I'll always reflect back on all the training miles I put into this race. After all, that was what was REAL about this marathon! I am glad to have had this experience and will proudly wear the Boston Marathon 2020 jacket.” - Robin Condon

  • “... Who runs their first EVER marathon virtual? I was really excited to be given the opportunity to run as a support runner for my friend Andy... Having family and MVS support was great.” - Shane Smith  

  • “...ready to run my first EVER Boston...heartbroken...unknown injury...determined to finish the virtual...the love and support around me was what I needed to finish strong.” - Amanda Smith

  • “, it wasn’t “the” Boston Marathon we all envisioned...still struggle to say I ran my 13th...because I didn’t run it on the course...very grateful to be a part of this “special” Boston Marathon experience...all agree that we all can’t wait to get back out there together!” - Lisa Maciel

  • “...just how grateful I am that, in these days of lemons, so many people showed up to make lemonade!” - Marcie DiLorenzo

  • “I’m still struggling to put my experience and all the emotions into words...amazing support crew...thank you MVS!” - Margi Johnston

  • What I will remember most about the virtual Boston is the generosity of the volunteers who supported the race all day!  Thank you all so much for being there to make the day easier and definitely more special!” - Louise Cummings

  • “ off we quietly went...we were enthused and optimistic...though we both ran a “personal worst” time, we agreed was a “personal best” race.  Smiles from start to finish...and if you’re really fortunate, you’ll attain the third level- you’ll become a “runner”...on September 12, 2020, I’m pretty sure that Bernie and I hit level three.”  - Tom Licciardello