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Marathon Monday

Today is a holiday in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. I believe in most of the state, it's recognized as Patriot's Day. Here in Boston, it's more commonly referred to as Marathon Monday.

Runners come from across the globe to participate in the Boston Marathon. It's a race steeped in history and tradition, and most people have to qualify with a speedy time in a different marathon just to be able to get a bib number in Boston. 

One of the most incredible things about the race to me is that the city of Boston stops what they're doing for a day to cheer on the runners. People of all ages line the race course, clapping, and cheering, and urging athletes on. And today, on this unseasonably balmy 90 degree day in April, spectators lined the course with orange slices and dixie cups of water and coolers full of ice. It is so very moving to see so many people supporting each other in the admirable goal of running 26.2 miles.

On days like today I would hug the city if I could.

Just a few snapshots from the infamous Heartbreak Hill:
This woman was handing out fistfuls of crushed ice to passing runners. When she missed this one runner, she actually ran after her to make sure she got the cool-off she needed.

These little kids were manning their own water stop, complete with icy cold sponges and orange slices.

This misting station at the base of the hill (equipped with a hose from a neighboring yard) was understandably verrrry popular.