Watertown-native Steve Farrell will take on the Boston Marathon for the second time, this time with his fiance Todd Robinson, and they will raise money to help connect low income families and individuals with housing that they can afford.
Farrell, who is the Director of Communications, Development and Policy for the Metropolitan Boston Housing Partnership (MBHP), has been running for a few years, and growing up near the Marathon course he dreamed as a child of running the fabled race.
When he was young Farrell would run a race from Waltham City Hall to the then Watertown Police Station in Watertown Square and then would either go home to watch the Marathon called by Chet Curtis and Natalie Jacobson or go with an older sibling to watch the race live.
Farrell ran his first marathon in 2012, and this year he will be joined by his fiance, who is newer to the sport.
“Our first race together was the Dorchester Firefighter 10k Memorial that fall. That was Todd’s first race, and we have been doing lots of half marathons together ever since,” Farrell said. “Todd wanted to run Boston two years ago for his 40th birthday, but getting a bib to run is very competitive – even when running for a charity. We tried again this year in anticipation of our wedding in September, and we were successful!”
Patriot’s Day Weekend will a big one, and not just because of the race.
“The weekend of the marathon will be marked with a visit from Todd’s parents who are coming from Chicago,” Farrell said. “They will also meet my family for the first time, which will make the moment even more special.”
The couple will both be running for MBHP, which connects low income families and individuals with housing that they can afford in Boston and about 30 cities and towns around the city.
“We help these families, many of whom are either homeless or at risk of being homeless, find clean and safe places to live, and then help them stabilize their lives with personalized coaching and supports,” Farrell said. “The cost of housing is a significant burden for families across the region. The money I am raising will go immediately to connect these families – our neighbors – with a place to call home.”
This year’s wacky winter has made training particularly challenging for Farrell, with a mild winter in February and then some big snow storms in March.
“I wore shorts at least three times in February, and I have not worn shorts at all in March,” Farrell said. “The worst of it was I had to do an eight mile run on a treadmill because of the blizzard we had two weeks ago. Running on a treadmill for more than an hour is drudgery beyond compare.”
Farrell is raising money for MBHP, and has already had some generous donors.
“Because people understand the need for affordable housing in the area, I have recently raised my goal to $11,000,” Farrell said. “Friends, family, colleagues – even Dr. Byrne, my family’s dentist in Watertown! – have been so generous. I want to let them know that I appreciate everything they have donated!”
He still hopes to raise more money to help find people housing. To contribute go to: http://bit.ly/MBHPSteve