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Georgette Arato is running to preserve the Charles River Esplanade for future generations

"The Esplanade has literally given me the path to actualize my running goals by providing me a safe running path."

Georgette Arato is running the 2021 Boston Marathon to raise money for the Esplanade Association and give back to a beloved park. Georgette Arato

In our “Why I’m Running” series, Boston Marathon runners share what’s inspiring them to make the 26.2-mile trek from Hopkinton to Boston. If you’re running the marathon, you can share your #WhyImRunningBoston story here.

Name: Georgette Arato
Age: 34
From: Quincy

I am taking part in the 125th Boston Marathon to raise money for the Esplanade Association — a nonprofit dedicated to revitalizing, enhancing, programming, and maintaining the historic Charles River Esplanade in downtown Boston.

City parks bring social, environmental, economic, and health benefits to communities. The Esplanade Association was formed in 2001 because the park had fallen into a state of decline, and local community members recognized the need for a group that could help to restore and enhance it.

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I fell in love with the Esplanade during my first visit to Boston in 2008. I could see myself running in the park and having picnics by the water. Since moving to Boston, I have benefited from the tireless work of the Esplanade Association in partnership with the Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation — movie nights, concerts, outdoor exercise classes, public art, playground improvements, and much more!

I became a long distance runner when I moved to Boston and I have successfully trained in the Esplanade for six marathons. The Esplanade has literally given me the path to actualize my running goals by providing me a safe running path (with water fountains and bathrooms!) for nearly 14 years. Now, I want to give back and ensure this park is vibrant for generations to come. I am committed to raising $14,000 for the Esplanade Association. If you have ever taken a stroll in the Charles River Esplanade or if you simply believe in the benefits of city parks, please help me reach my goal.

Editor’s note: Entry may have been lightly edited for clarity or grammar.

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