The New York City Marathon has been cancelled per a decision made by Mayor Michael Bloomberg just days before the race scheduled for Sunday, November 4, 2012 as the city and surrounding areas recover from Hurricane Sandy. Bloomberg’s decision was delivered under mounting criticism from runners, residents, politicians, and other officials. Marathon and city officials considered a postponement or modification of the course of the race.
Bloomberg was hesitant to call off the 26.2 mile race because it would “give people something to cheer about in what has been a very dismal week for a lot of people.” Many were outraged that Bloomberg would consider allowing the race to happen, particularly since the marathon would draw away from resources the city and surrounding areas could use for clean up efforts. Ultimately, Bloomberg agreed and offered a statement which read: “the marathon has always brought our city together and inspired us with stories of courage and determination. We would not want a cloud to hang over the race of its participants, so we have decided to cancel it.”
Race officials and organizers have decided to donate the proceeds intended for the race - like food, blankets, generators, and other amenities - to residents still dealing with power outages, inadequate food and shelter, property damages, and other effects of the storm.
This is the first time since the New York City Marathon began in 1970 that it has been called off. As the largest annual marathon in the world, the race usually has over 45,000 participants and includes a route through 5 boroughs of the City.