Dorchester-Based Running Crew Puts On 'True' Boston Marathon

Photo: WBZ NewsRadio / Suzanne Sausville

BOSTON (WBZ NewsRadio) — A group based in Dorchester ran their own Boston marathon ahead of the Boston Athletic Association's on Monday, with routes that spend more time in the City than in outer suburbs.

On Saturday, the Pioneers Run Crew raced the 26.True, a marathon that the running club says is more of a Boston experience. Dozens of runners gathered at the starting line at Malcolm X Park in Roxbury, and circled into multiple neighborhoods in the City to sum up to the 26 miles. According to the PRC, the 26.True loop stretches as far north as Allston and south enough to cut through Mattapan and Hyde Park.

Founder of the PRC Sidney Baptista says that the 26.True marathon is about bringing runners through neighborhoods that are largely untouched on Marathon Monday.

"We just want to be able to run and say we ran a marathon where we live. Typically, people see runners in our neighborhoods, and they associate them with danger, and so, for us to normalize running we just have to do it a lot and bring a lot more people doing it. When kids grow up and see that, then it's something they can think they can do- it's not something that's foreign anymore," Baptista said.

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Apart from the marathon, the PRC meets regularly twice a week in Savin Hill and Fields Corner, two Boston neighborhoods that usually do not see much running activity. But Baptista of Dorchester is looking to change that, as the PRC says their mission is to create a diverse and welcoming running community, where speed and skill is not necessarily the top priority.

The 26.True was also held in the fall, right around the time the 2021 Boston Marathon took place.

"Getting down into the City and only spending your time on Boylston Street and Newbury Street is not getting the full experience," Baptista said.

WBZ's Suzanne Sausville (@wbzSausville) reports.

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