SI also features a regional cover this week of Boston Red Sox outfielder Jonny Gomes pumping his fists in the air after beginning a game-winning rally with a double in Saturdays’ emotional victory at Fenway Park. The image falls under the headline: “Strong. Triumph After Tragedy.” SI managing editor Chris Stone on why this regional cover was chosen:

“From a sports context, Boston Strong was the story in New England this weekend, especially on Saturday, the day after the lockdown and the capture of the second of the Marathon bombing suspects. There it is: a Sox player flexing his guns after hitting a double to start a game-winning rally. At that moment, I don’t know if there’s any image that could have better captured the mood.”

Inside SI, senior writer S.L. Price writes that the apparent end to last week’s terror resulted in a weekend to celebrate in Boston, a time for civic pride and a time to proclaim that the Marathon will be bigger and stronger next year. However, as the period of relief settles down, Price says now is the time to ask what can be done to avoid a similar tragedy in the future.

“The celebrations will pass and new tougher, darker questions are going to have to be considered—S.L. Price, who’s been in Boston for more than a week, explains this convincingly and hauntingly in this week’s issue,” says Stone.

Price raises questions about terrorism security at future sporting events. He spoke to Rey Mey, a former FBI counter-terrorism expert now working as an international security consultant. Mey was concerned by the lack of security at the finish line of the Boston Marathon and tells Price that we can’t go forward with the same attitudes toward public safety at sporting events because these types of incidents aren’t going away. He says Marathon day is “really something special. But with the society we live in, it’s never going to be the same. (Page 58)

The future of such events is already changing shape. Price notes that the planning power will shift from event planners to security officials. Sunday’s London Marathon, for instance, was staffed by 40% more police than usual.

Price says: “Marathons that end on congested areas surrounded by storefronts and offices could well find their traditional courses altered…crowds lining the route will face increased scrutiny and hassle, and more popular races could erect temporary, ‘sanitized’ stands for family and friends. Undercover operatives, some armed with pole-cameras that stream back to monitors viewed in real-time, will move among the crowds. Entry fees will rise. Ticketing may become mandatory.” (PAGE 58)


5 thoughts on “#BostonStrong on Sports Illustrated Regional Cover

  1. I think that if an event like the Marathon thinks that they can charge for tickets, as is speculated above…then the event will be destroyed. The Marathon is loved because it is accessible to all. I remember when the hew and cry went on because the BAA started paying prize money and appearance fees. It was accused of being too commercial then. If they try and sell tickets for viewing along the road (as opposed to VIP grandstands at the end of the race) then there will be, in my opinion, a loss of interest. Its kind of like the elimination of day baseball and the double header. More and more kids are apathetic towards baseball because they never see it. The marathon is a unique enough sporting event as it is. Making it more exclusive is not the solution. Recognize that 2 crazy people who follow a murderous, restrictive cultlike philosophy shrouded in religious terms and symbolism, attempted to terrorize the population and if you change the Marathon, make it less inclusive, or more “secure” next year then they have won. Their attack is on our open culture. They want us to close it…to be more like them so that we cannot have the moral high ground. It is insidious. Let’s hope cooler heads prevail and that next years even is still free, still open, and not restrictive.

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    1. I think he was talking theoretically….of course you’re right – there’s no way they’d ever charge to see the Marathon.

      But, will similar future events need to manage attendance with some sort of ticketing access even if it’s free? No doubt…so it won’t be a “hey, let’s walk down to the finish line!” anymore.


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