Why is the Boston Marathon held on a Monday? The story behind Patriots Day
Since the beginning of the world’s oldest marathon, it has always been held of Patriots Day. We look at the history of the Boston Marathon
Right from the start of the inaugural Boston Marathon in 1897, it has traditionally been held as part of the Patriots Day celebrations.
What is Patriots Day, you ask. Patriots Day is a holiday recognized only in the states of Massachusetts and Maine, observed on April 19, to commemorate the battles of Lexington, Concord, and Menotomy which began the American Revolution.
Additionally, Wisconsin, Connecticut, and North Dakota also recognize the holiday in some capacity.
The date of April 19th was chosen as it is the actual date of the battles in 1775, and up until 1968 the race was always held on that date, unless it fell on a Sunday.
Since 1969, however, the date of Patriots Day has been fixed as the third Monday in April, and likewise the Boston Marathon followed suit, giving us the double tradition of Boston Marathon and Patriots Day always on a Monday.
The only exception to this was during the coronavirus pandemic when the marathon was postponed, and eventually ran as a virtual experience in September. The following year saw the race return in person, but being held in October 2021.
Now back on track, the Boston Marathon returns to its traditional home of Patriots Day.