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Event Information: Along The Course

Find out what to expect along the Boston Marathon course


From mile two to mile 25, there will be hydration stations at every mile on both sides of the road. Each station will first have four tables of Lemon-Lime Gatorade Endurance Formula, and the remaining tables will have Poland Spring water. Gatorade
Poland Spring


Digital clocks, positioned at every mile and 5K mark, indicate the unofficial running time from the 10:00 a.m. start only. Signage indicates mile and 5K marks.



  • Runners unable to finish the race may stop for assistance and direction at one of the 26 American Red Cross first aid stations along the course.
  • Sweep buses pick up runners at every Red Cross station with drop-off at the Finish Area medical tent.
  • Aid stations along the course close at staggered times during the day.
  • Finish area facilities officially close at approximately 6:10 p.m. (which is approximately 6.5 hours about the last participant crosses the starting line). No official times are recorded after approximately 5:30pm (or six hours after the last official runner crosses the starting line.
  • Runners still out on the course when officials determine that it is time to reopen the roads (approximately a 15-minute per mile pace) will be instructed to move to the right side of the road.
  • Once roads begin to reopen to vehicular traffic, course infrastructure (such as timing systems, course clocks, medical stations, and water stations) will all begin to be closed and cease operation.
  • Runners on the course after this time accept that they will be on their own and should plan accordingly.
  • The B.A.A. will have a team of cyclists in the rear of the pack to assist runners who are at or slower than 15-minute per mile pace.



For your convenience and use during the race, the B.A.A. provides portable toilets at the following locations on the course:

  • Mile 3 - Ashland
  • Mile 7 - Framingham
  • Mile 10 - Natick
  • Mile 12 - Wellesley
  • Mile 18 - Newton
  • Mile 23.5 – Brookline

These are in addition to the toilets at every water and Red Cross station. Please respect the communities through which the Boston Marathon runs by taking advantage of these facilities, if needed.



More information coming soon

The order of our finish area services has been modified. Finishers will receive:

  • Medals
  • Heatsheet or Mylar Blanket
  • Fluid replacement (Poland Spring Water and Gatorade)
  • Food

If you decide to take advantage of the gear check opportunity on Boston Common, you will need to walk approximately one half mile to the gear check area to retrieve your bag. You will receive an email from the B.A.A., requesting from you whether or not you intend to take advantage of the gear check opportunity on Boston Common on the morning of the race. At the conclusion of the race, the B.A.A. will provide participants with a heatsheet or mylar blanket.


All information above is subject to change at any time.
B.A.A. Moment 1

1920 - Ashland Start

The Boston Marathon began in Ashland, Massachusetts from 1897 through 1923 then moved to Hopkinton for the 1924 race. The course was lengthened to 26 miles, 385 yards to conform to the Olympic standard, and the starting line was moved west from Ashland to Hopkinton. Since then, the race has started in Hopkinton every year.