Wellesley ‘Scream Tunnel’ Prepared to Pump Runners Up

Wellesely, MA., 04/21/14, Wellesley College student Alix Lewis, cq, sets up the scream tunnel posters. The 2014 Boston Marathon arrives in Wellesley. Suzanne Kreiter/Globe staff (The Boston Globe.
Wellesley College student Alix Lewis set up scream tunnel posters Monday morning.
Suzanne Kreiter/Globe staff

The Wellesley Scream Tunnel is in place and ready to be as loud as ever.

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Wellesley’s downtown is the Boston Marathon’s halfway point—a significant psychological mark for runners—on Route 135. But before they get there they pass one of the highlights of the course. The so-called “Scream Tunnel,” a wall of sound—and free kisses—is kept up all race long by the students and faculty at Wellesley College.

With signs like

Tildy Banker-Johnson with her Wellesley Scream Tunnel sign.
Katherine McCabe photo

“I Majored in Kissing,” the more than 35,000 runners in the 118th Boston Marathon will get an enthusiastic boost from the community.

According to Wellesley College, students are reported to have cheered on a favorite Harvard student in the marathon’s first race in 1897.

The college’s Munger Hall takes the sign-making seriously, taking custom requests. Here is a look at some made for this year’s race:

About 800 signs, three times the 2013 amount, were requested this year, according to Bostinno, and about 2,000 students, staff, and alumni plan to show their love to this year’s field of runners.

Wellesley College senior Ashley Porras told WBUR:

"I think that everyone has implicitly and consciously decided throughout the Boston community, and the Massachusetts community, and specifically the Wellesley community, to do everything that we can to make this marathon a memorable and happier one than the one previous," Porras said.

Another freshman wasn’t so sure what to expect:

"I'm actually not sure how I feel about getting kissed by very, very sweaty strangers, but I heard it's an experience so I might try it," Annie Shen told WBUR.