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COVID keeps Hartford Marathon runners from coming together - but only physically

"We have come together and supported each other through every trail, every street, every movement, it's been amazing, " said Patricia Vega-Dones of Manchester.

HARTFORD, Conn. — This year's Hartford Marathon was held virtually from October 8th to 11th, however runners still found ways to connect with each other.

"It was still just as much fun. We miss the 5000 people in the crowd, but we run with a fun group," said Richard Kraszewski of Middletown.

Instead of running through the streets of Hartford, this year's virtual marathon took the race to streets and trails all over Connecticut.

"We have come together and supported each other through every trail, every street, every movement, it's been amazing," said Patricia Vega-Dones of Manchester.

At popular running spots around the state, people participated in the "mobile medal" experience to take pictures at their own finish lines while supporters cheered them on.

"Given that I had to walk a lot of the last five miles just to be able to run across the finish line and see the crowd there and have them all cheer for you was fantastic," said Mike Fournier of West Hartford.

While training was also different this year, the race did give participants something to look forward to.

"You couldn't do anything else this summer, your normal summer activities so we had plenty of time to get in your training so actually it turned out to be a great summer to train for this," said Fournier.

It also gave them the chance to take on new challenges with four days to complete different races.

"On Thursday I did the full marathon, Friday I did the 5K, yesterday I did the half marathon while I was supporting my husband doing his first marathon and today right after here I'm going to go finish my 10K," said Vega-Dones.

Something else made possible this year? 100 percent of the proceeds from registration fees are going to charity.