Boston Marathon

Wellesley to ‘Scream Tunnel’ students: Please keep lips to yourself on Marathon Monday

Although the BAA has rolled back health restrictions, Wellesley College is still asking students to refrain from kissing runners.

Students watching the Boston Marathon from Wellesley College's Scream Tunnel often request runners to kiss them. Yoon S. Byun/Globe Staff

Since its inception, the midway point of Boston Marathon’s route has weaved through Wellesley College. And in all 126 races, runners passing through the campus, known in marathon lore as “Scream Tunnel,” have been met with signs, shouts of encouragement, and kisses from students at the women’s college.

But with ongoing pandemic concerns, Wellesley has asked students to keep their lips to themselves, suggesting alternatives to smooching sprinters — something some students say they have done on Marathon Monday hundreds of times.


The college told they are encouraging students — who often line the campus’ marathon barriers with “Kiss me” posters — to continue to make signs for and cheer on runners as much as possible, but rather than make lip-to-lip contact, instead hand out kiss stickers or blow bubbles (which the school will provide for free before the race).


The Boston Athletic Association issued a similar warning for the 2021 race after the marathon was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic the year before.

For the 127th marathon, the association has rolled back its strict health regulations seen in the past pandemic-era races. Though encouraged, there is no proof of vaccine requirement for runners this year, and participants only need to wear masks in designated areas.


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