With a history of nautical scholarship that dates back to the mid 1930s, Community Boating Inc. has graduated thousands of students from its hands-on sailing school and into the ranks of skipperdom. Seasoned instructors lead classes for all ages, with separate youth, adult, and universal-access programs to ensure that the sweeping vistas, invigorating mists, and albatross necklaces of seafaring can be enjoyed by all. Certified students and members can take jaunts across the Charles River atop a kayak or Mercury sailboat borrowed from Community Boating Inc.’s 100-strong fleet of windblown and man-powered vessels.
Some people may see sailing as a way to save money on gas when traveling by water, but Courageous Sailing, recognized as a top 10 community sailing center by US Sailing and Sail Magazine, sees it as a way to educate, build leadership skills, and promote life-long learning in youth, adults, and the physically disabled. Since 1987, the nonprofit organization has hosted sailing programs for Boston's youth along with providing accessible sailing lessons and membership to the community at large. The Courageous staff serves numerous children a year with their curriculum, which teaches kids personal responsibility, communication, problem solving, and teamwork through sailing. They’ve also hosted local Special Olympians, as well as weekly races for visually impaired youths through their partnership with The Carroll Center for the Blind.
At Paradise Mini Golf, friends and families guide colorful golf balls through an 18-hole oasis of zigzagging putting greens and tropical obstacles. The course’s river exposes orbs to the treachery of a flowing stream on multiple holes, and a 35-foot-tall tree house gives local birds a chance to cheer on putt-putters or stock up on nourishing golf balls for winter's hibernation. After a round, golfers can stop by the koi pond and feed the fish at the feeding station or visit the ice-cream stand. Visitors looking to expand their golf game beyond the mini domain can drop by the Paradise Driving Range to hone lengthier swings.
Players slide and duck for cover as a hailstorm of paint-filled pellets ricochets off the inflated obstacles of Boston Paintball's two brand-new indoor playing fields. The two side-by-side shooting galleries are littered with strategically placed inflatables, with Field #2 containing the standard red and blue geometrics of tournament paintball and Field #1 dotted with air-filled tanks & humvees, castle turrets, and an inflatable-windsock general that gives constant, flailing orders. Each conflict is coordinated by a trained referee, who officiates the game and strictly enforces a "two-strike" rule on mask and barrel-bag violations, which means the game is one-third more unforgiving than baseball.