The Courageous Sailing Agreement & General Release and Membership Terms & Conditions Form  




This agreement applies to all sailors and other participants, whether paying a fee or not, participating in operations and programs operated (a) by The Courageous Sailing Center for Youth, Inc. (“Courageous”) or (b) on property owned or controlled by Courageous (collectively, “Operations”). Such persons shall be referred to herein as “You”, a “Guest” or collectively “Guests”. As a precondition for any Guest to participate in the Operations, each Guest must (a) assume all risks of harm from their participation, (b) hold harmless and indemnify Courageous and the others described below for all damage or harm caused directly or indirectly by their participation, (c) release Courageous and the others described below from any and all damage to themselves resulting from their participation in the Operations, and (d) otherwise agree to abide by the terms and conditions of this agreement. This agreement shall remain in full force and effect from the date it is signed until it is superseded by a new written agreement created by Courageous and signed by the Guest.


“Boating” (for the purpose of this agreement “boats” and “boating” include all motorboats, sailboats, kayaks, stand up paddle boards, and any other water-based Courageous activity) is an inherently dangerous activity. Guest assumes all risk associated with their activities while at Courageous, while using a Courageous boat and during any Courageous program or event. Guest assumes full responsibility for themselves and those with whom they share a boat.


You agree not to use (either as operator/skipper, or passenger) a Courageous boat if you are not comfortable with the weather conditions, with a person in your boat, or with the boat itself; or if you are not willing to be fully responsible for damage to yourself, to your boat or other boats, or to other people.


All Courageous memberships, lessons and other programs are non-transferable and for personal, non-commercial use only. Membership, lessons and/or other program fees are not refundable, including for reasons due to inability to utilize the membership, lesson or program. Lessons may be rescheduled at no charge up until 3 weeks before the start date of the lesson, if space is available in a future lesson (within the same calendar year). 


2. Assumption of Risk & General Release

Guest hereby acknowledges that serious accidents may occur during boating or other activities connected with Courageous Operations, including those related to the current pandemic and that mortal or serious personal injuries and/or property damage or other loss may result from participation in these Operations as a result of the nature of boating and the pandemic. Guest knowingly assumes all risks of participation, including all risk of personal injury and loss of or damage to the Guest or their property, including further injury sustained as the result of the efforts of persons who come to the aid of Guest(s) if injured as a result of participation in the Operations, and hereby release all other persons and entities mentioned above who might otherwise be liable to Guest.


In consideration of Guest being permitted to participate in Courageous Operations, Guest, on behalf of themselves and their heirs, executors, administrators, personal representatives and next of kin, agrees to assume all of the risks and responsibilities of participation, including without limitation such risks and responsibilities as may be magnified by the pandemic, and hereby releases, waives, discharges, agrees to hold harmless, covenants not to sue and covenants and agrees to indemnify Courageous, the City of Boston, the Boston Parks and Recreation Department, the Boston Planning and Development Authority, US Sailing and their collective board members, trustees, agents, officers, employees, representatives, volunteers and contractors and all other persons associated with Courageous Operations (collectively, “Courageous Parties”), with respect to any and all liability for any harm, injury, damage, cost or expense of any nature whatsoever, including but not limited to suffering and death, which Guest may incur, regardless of the cause, while participating in, or in transit to or from, the Courageous Operations.


This release is intended to discharge each Courageous Party from any and all liability arising out of or connected in any way with Guest’s participation in the Operations including without limitation if that liability arises out of negligence or carelessness on the part of any Courageous Party.


In consideration of the COVID-19 infections throughout the United States and the reopening of Courageous Operations during the reopening phases from the COVID-19 lockdown, Courageous has taken certain steps to implement recommended guidance and protocols issued by the Public Health Agencies for slowing the transmission of COVID-19. Guest agrees to abide by the rules, regulations, and policies of Courageous, including any and all COVID-19 related safety measures required by Courageous. Guest acknowledges and agrees that Courageous may revise its rules, regulations, and policies at any time based on updated recommended guidance and protocols issued by the Public Health Agencies or otherwise. Guest further acknowledges and agrees to comply with Courageous’ revised procedures prior to participating in the Courageous Operations and to review the Courageous website for updates prior to each visit to Courageous.


Guest acknowledges and agrees that, due to the nature of boating and other programs offered by Courageous, social distancing of 6 feet per person may not be possible in situations such as when rescue is conducted in the event of an emergency or even when passing an individual on a dock.

Guest fully understands and appreciates both the known and potential dangers of participating in the Courageous Operations in light of the current COVID-19 pandemic, and acknowledges that participation in the Courageous Operations may, despite Courageous’ reasonable efforts to mitigate such dangers, result in exposure to COVID-19, which could result in quarantine requirements, serious illness, disability, exposure to others in Guest’s household, and/or death. Guest agrees that they have independently investigated these risks and accept these risks as part of Guest’s decision to participate in the Operations. Guest agrees to release, indemnify and discharge, Courageous and all other Courageous Parties, from any claims, actions and demands that Guest may have from quarantine requirements, serious illness, disability, and/or death, or any monetary damage arising from COVID-19 infection in the same manner and to the fullest extent as for any other risk associated with participation in the Operations. Boating during the pandemic can be dangerous.


3. Choice of Law, Forum

This agreement shall be interpreted under and governed by the laws of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. If any provision of this agreement is deemed so broad as to be unenforceable, such provision shall be interpreted to be so broad as is enforceable and all other provisions shall be enforceable. All disputes which arise out of this agreement shall be adjudicated in courts of competent jurisdiction located in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.


4. Photo and Video Release

Guest gives Courageous permission to use photographs and videos taken by Courageous staff or partners while Guest is using Courageous boats, facilities, or participating in Courageous activities. Photos may be used in print or electronic formats in its promotional materials, including the right to copy, modify and to make derivative works.


5. Membership, Lessons and Other Programs


Memberships run from May 1 through October 31 unless otherwise specified (monthly memberships, frostbiting memberships, racing memberships, etc.). Annual core Rhodes 19 memberships are valid for 1 year from date of purchase (excepting November 1 - through April 30). Such periods may be modified by Courageous in its sole discretion.


Boats are available to members on a first-come, first-served basis. Reservations are strongly recommended. Most boats are reserved on weekdays in July and August from 9:30 am – 3:30 pm for our youth sailing program and may be reserved at other times by Courageous for other purposes (e.g., events and courses). Memberships remain in effect and running continuously whenever Courageous operations are interrupted due to weather and other circumstances. Courageous may substitute substantially similar boats to those described at any time.


6. Safety Obligations of all Members (Guests with a Courageous Sailing membership entitling them to skipper Courageous boats) and Guests while boating and engaging in Courageous Operations:


Each Guest agrees to comply with the following rules:

  • Guests must use Courageous boats safely and with good judgment. Guests must not run or jump on dock or boats. Guests must always step carefully from dock to boat, between boats or within boat while keeping one hand available to hold shrouds or other parts of the boat to maintain balance;

  • Guests must not consume alcoholic beverages or controlled substances before or while operating Courageous boats;

  • Guests must not possess illegal substances at any time on Courageous property;

  • Guests may only use (as operator or passenger) boats when they are in good physical health and are physically able to perform the type of effort needed for safe boating; and

  • Guests shall always wear a correctly fitting, secured and USCG approved personal flotation device when boating


Additionally, Members and any Guest that operates a boat other than as a passenger agrees to:

  • Complete an orientation session before operating any class of boat for the first time;

  • Follow all Courageous rules and policies; adhere to any restrictions imposed by Courageous staff at any time (both individual restrictions based on a skill and experience level, or general restrictions on the fleet due to weather or other circumstances);

  • Follow the current Coast Guard Navigation Rules and operate boats in compliance with all applicable local, state and federal laws and regulations;

  • All sailboats are expected to keep a proper lookout and keep well clear of other boats at all times. When sailing in or near the shipping channel, all Courageous boats must look both ways, at least once per minute, for an incoming tanker, barge or commercial traffic restricted in its ability to maneuver. When a tanker or other restricted vessel is identified, boats must immediately sail to the side of the channel nearest them or take a clear path away from the middle of the channel if equidistant;

  • Complete and pass both a written and an on-the-water boating evaluation before operating a boat;

  • Operate boats only in designated areas (varies by boat, qualifications and other circumstances);

  • Be knowledgeable about daily tide schedule, weather (present and forecasted) and time of sunset before leaving the dock;

  • If boating beyond the Inner Harbor (not permitted without Green Flag certification or express, written permission of Courageous), submit a written float plan that accounts for conditions and itinerary;

  • Notify Courageous immediately of any damage or loss (including to safety equipment on board) that occurs before, during or after use of an assigned boat;

  • Never leave the dock without all designated safety equipment (anchor, paddle, pump, type 4 throwable personal flotation device, VHF radio or mobile phone, etc.);

  • Only use boats that have been properly assigned and checked out by Courageous staff;

  • Ensure that you and your guests wear a correctly fitting, secured and USCG approved personal flotation device at all times when boating; 

  • Ensure you and your guests wear footwear with enclosed toes (not flip-flops or bare feet);

  • Operate boats only in designated areas (varies by boat, qualifications and other circumstances);

  • Only stop at non-Courageous docks or moorings if boat becomes disabled or in the event of adverse weather; not otherwise stop to pick-up or drop-off passengers or leave boat unattended. Cruising boats above 26’ may be exempt from this restriction provided that any intended destination is expressly indicated on float plan, and that float plan is approved by Courageous staff;

  • Always have and use appropriate nautical charts, VHF radio and mobile phone when traveling beyond the Inner Harbor (not permitted without Green Flag certification and express permission of Courageous);

  • Ensure boats are returned in clean condition and properly de-rigged and tied down to the Courageous dock 30 minutes before sunset, unless participating in a group activity with motorboat supervision (such as racing), in which case the return time may be extended at the discretion of Courageous staff; and

  • Must not take out a boat with others unless they are willing to accept all obligations in this agreement.

7. Member Responsibility for Injuries & Damages

Members and Guests are liable for all injuries and damages caused by or to Courageous boats and equipment while they are in the boat, with the exception of equipment that fails due to normal use. The cost of damages includes Courageous’ actual costs for parts, materials and labor and any third party charges incurred.


8. Racing

Participating in racing increases the risk of damage and injury. Guests remain responsible for all such damage according to the terms of this agreement and agree to abide by the applicable Sailing Instructions and Notice of Race in the determination of any such liability. In the event that no such Sailing Instructions or Notice of Race exists, then the Racing Rules of Sailing and Courageous’ standard Sailing Instructions (available from the Courageous Staff) shall apply.


9. Running Expenses

While utilizing cruising boats, Guests are responsible for all running expenses during boating including, but not limited to, fuel, dock/mooring charges, etc. Guests are responsible for the proper disposal of all trash.


10. US Sailing

All US Sailing courses are provided in accordance with existing standards. Completion of a course or issuance of a US Sailing certification shall not be used as certification that a student is adequately prepared to embark on any specific sailing excursion. Additional US Sailing fee required to receive certification. All terms and conditions of this agreement and Courageous rules and policies are subject to change. The current forms will be posted in the Courageous Boathouse.


11. COVID-19 Protocols

In consideration for being permitted to utilize boating or other activities connected with Courageous Operations during the reopening phases from the COVID-19 lockdown, Guests shall read in advance and comply with our “2020 Member Policy Updates, COVID-19 Response” and other applicable Courageous guidelines and protocols at all times while participating in Courageous Operations as may be posted and updated on the Courageous website, which Guest agrees to review prior to each visit. 


Contact us if Guests are having COVID-19 symptoms and/or are positively diagnosed with COVID-19 within 14 days of participating in Courageous Operations on our pier. 


Failure to abide by these terms and conditions may result in the suspension or termination of memberships without refund. Guest has read and understands their indemnification obligations under this agreement could impose a serious financial burden on them, including if they fail to comply with all guidelines.

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