WELLESLEY – When Marathon Monday hits the town of Wellesley, the businesses along the route know that, while the town is going to be busy, business can be slow. This is not a problem for the Wellesley branch of Marathon Sports. The company is so entrenched in the Boston Marathon that nothing else matters when the runners come through, not even opening up shop. For this popular local business, support and preparation for the Boston Marathon happens all year round, and race day is the most important part.
Howard Sagrans first opened Marathon Sports in 1975 and Colin Peddie took over the business in 1992. Over the years, it has become an award-winning staple of the region. With the company motto of “Keeping Your Life in Motion”, Marathon Sports helps give area athletes a healthy foundation for their athletic activities. There is the obvious, selling running gear, and the not-so-obvious, selling Boston Strong merchandise and hosting running clubs.
“Marathon Sports as a company does an awful lot to support the Boston Marathon. We consider the historical race our baby, in many ways,” said Jonathan Pierce, the manager of the Wellesley Marathon Sports. “We provide support to numerous charity groups for the marathon, including Dana Farber, Team in Training, the Marathon Coalition, Spaulding Rehab and the One Fund. This support can mean anything from to allowing the groups to use our space as a meeting spot for long runs, providing supplies for water stops, educational clinics to keep the groups healthy in their training.”
Pierce continued, “We also provide discounts on all products for the Marathon charities, ranging from 10 to 20 percent. Our support is not limited to the charities; we have all the official and unofficial gear to serve any runner to help them through such a tough training season. We serve as a location for runners of all types, charity or qualifier to come in to a casual, friendly atmosphere and feel comfortable to talk about all their marathon exploits.”
Note: All promotions for charities continue through to Marathon Monday.
Marathon Sports’ involvement does anything but stop once training is over and Marathon Monday begins. People in Wellesley will see Pierce and his team out supporting runners. What they will be doing come the big day? “The Wellesley store is closed on Marathon Monday,” explained Pierce. “Because we are right on the course, that day generally proves to be quiet in the store. Thus, our team is out there playing cheerleader, working water stops or working downtown. Either way, Marathon Sports’ energy is high that day.”
Pierce’s final thoughts on the 2014 Boston Marathon were as unerringly positive and helpful as the company he represents. “This year, I wish all the runners the best of luck. They have persevered through one of the toughest training seasons that I can remember and have been out there each and every weekend getting in their long runs. It has been humbling to watch. This year will bring unparalleled excitement and energy and Boston will once again be a showcase for strength and good times. If the city works together, respects the new security protocols and the weather holds out; I have no doubts this will be the best Boston Marathon yet. Now all us non-marathoners need to do is keep the bars busy and the sidelines packed!”
Non-marathoners will get the chance to heed his advice on April 21.
Shelly Barclay is a professional freelance writer and amateur author. She writes on a variety of topics from food to mysteries. She loves to share the culture and rich history of her birthplace and home, Boston, with the rest of the world. Her work can be found at Examiner.com.