To those of you in Massachusetts, happy Patriots’ Day!
If you don’t live around here and are wondering what the heck Patriots’ Day is, I’ll tell you: it’s a civic holiday that marks the anniversary of the Battles of Lexington and Concord. It also coincides with the Boston Marathon every year, which some would argue is more important. Most Bostonians celebrate the day (off) by catching some of the marathon, having a few drinks and/or watching the Red Sox game. In other words, we celebrate our hard-earned freedom and those who sacrificed their lives for it with sports and beer. If only our founding fathers could see us now.
In all seriousness, the Boston Marathon is truly an amazing event. It began in 1897 and is the world’s oldest annual marathon, attracting tens of thousands of racers from all over the world each year. The marathon brings the city of Boston together like no other experience, as crowds of people leave the confines of suburban neighborhoods to watch history in the making at the finish line downtown. You usually can’t see much through the teems of people (especially if you happen to be short), but the energy of the crowds, the announcers and, of course, the runners is more than worth the effort.
As someone who couldn’t run three consecutive miles, let alone 26.2, every year I am blown away by the ability, strength and perseverance of these runners — one of whom works in this very office. Liz ran the Boston Marathon when she was 21.
Often, in our work with colleges, universities and independent schools, we must conceive of effective, pitch-perfect ways to convey both the rich history of a school and its present/future—celebrating the old while embracing the new.
It’s for this reason that I love the marathon, and Patriots’ Day: the two together represent the heart of Massachusetts, and of Boston. It’s a city so stooped in history, yet it is always moving forward (albeit somewhat reluctantly), pushing limits and breaking down barriers. On a day like today, I wouldn’t want to live anywhere else.