MANCHESTER, NH (FOX 25 / MyFoxBoston.com) Thousands of runners who planned to run the New York Marathon are headed for New Hampshire on Sunday.
The marathon in Manchester has always been scheduled on the same weekend as the New York Marathon, but Mayor Michael Bloomberg chose to pull the plug on the Big Apple's marathon after the city spent days without electricity, water cell phone service, and barely any gasoline.
Earlier in the week, Mayor Bloomberg said Sunday's race would go on because businesses need the boost. On Friday, the mayor and marathon organizers decided it would be best to cancel because they didn't want to divert resources from the recovery effort.
Sean Hyland, a native New Yorker who is now living in Boston, was all set to run his first marathon in New York, but he understands why it was called off.
"I think the mayor wanted to project New York resilience that they can get through anything but I think they were getting a lot of heat and backlash because a lot of the resources like water was going be going to the runners which they need, but, it's needed more elsewhere," says Hyland.
Hyland also says he's been a spectator at the marathon before and that the excited, celebratory vibe wouldn't be there this year. He's planning to run the marathon in Manchester on Sunday alongside thousands of other runners.
"Luckily my bus to New York was scheduled for this morning so I was able to get a refund on that and found out about this race last night and registered and my first marathon will be here instead of New York," says Hyland.
Manchester organizers are accommodating the expected 2,500 runners coming from New York by keeping race pick up open on Sunday so that runners can register and pick up their t-shirts.
While some marathon runners head to New Hampshire, others will be staying in New York and New Jersey to volunteer in the recovery effort. On Saturday, Newark Mayor Cory Booker tweeted about some international marathon runners who have volunteered to help.
"@CoryBooker Wow, 40 Marathon runners from Amsterdam just called to volunteer. They are not running so they want to help. #InternationalKindness"