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Courageous' signature event.
Boston Harbor's best outdoor gala.

Our 24th Annual Make-A-Mark Celebration is postponed, but our $400,000 Fund-A-Future Initiative has never been more necessary to support Courageous kids!


For many years, Make-A-Mark has been a festive occasion, bringing together a tent full of Courageous supporters who raise critical funds for our programs that serve youth from all backgrounds. In 2020, given the tremendous challenges faced by so many through the coronavirus pandemic, our priority for Make-A-Mark is to do all we can to keep everyone safe, and to ensure that Courageous will be there for our kids as soon as we can safely get back on our boats and into our classrooms. When that day comes, our kids and families will need Courageous more than ever. We are asking all of our volunteers, sponsors, and patrons to give as generously as possible to support our mission, our programs, and our Courageous kids.

Event Frequently Asked Questions

Courageous Leadership Profile

Ladd and Sigrid Thorne

Since 2012, Courageous has been addressing challenges head on through our Reach Initiative, which targets all barriers to participation for kids at every level of our program, and through our Swim Sail Science program, an intensive two-year program for rising 4th and 5th graders that blends sailing, swimming and academics (in partnership with Boston Public Schools) that has been proven effective at reducing summer learning loss.

Ladd and Sigrid Thorne have been champions of these programs from their inception. This year they channeled their energy into making Fund-A-Future and over-the-top success, and in doing so, helping to secure the future of the Reach Initiative and Swim Sail Science for next year’s students.

Read their story

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Last Year’s Event

The 22nd Annual Make-A-Mark Celebration

Over 300 guests joined us under Peak’s tent for a beautiful evening on the pier in support of Courageous kids for our most successful Make-A-Mark ever.

Our attendees danced the night away to live music from Compaq Big Band and enjoyed delicious food tastings from Boston caterers Capers Catering, Rita’s Catering, La Voile, Relish Catering, as well as New England’s famous clam chowder from Boston Sail Loft and fresh oysters from Real Oyster Cult. Ed Premier’s Bartending served cocktails and spirits, generously donated by Goslings, Tito’s, Sam Adams, and Milton’s.

Our live and silent auction items, ranging from front-row seats to a Celtics game, a private viewing of the USS Constitution, access to the field during Red Sox pre-batting practice and a tour of the Green Monster, and vacations to Cape Cod, Maine, and Finland, as well as VIP concert tickets and certificates to favorite local restaurant dinner dates, were a hit.

Our guests took a few moments to reflect on our year-round youth programming fundraiser, Fund-A-Future, which lies at the heart of Make-A-Mark and directly supports marginalized youth by providing transportation, access to swimming lessons, and summertime learning to 60 students each summer. Guests raised $85,000 within 10 minutes. Their generosity and excitement reflects the spirit of the Courageous community.

In total, our sponsors, friends, supporters, and community raised over $230,000 for Courageous kids, the largest amount raised at our gala to date. Thank you so much to those who attended for making Make-A-Mark a special evening and for being part of the Courageous story.

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Special thanks to our 2018 Make-A-Mark Sponsors

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Coyne Fund Trust

Bullerjahn Family Fund