The second annual Burning Boat Festival will be held on New Year’s Eve (Dec. 31, 2023), from 6–9 p.m. at Des Moines Beach Park, with the boat set to burn at 9 p.m.

This year’s event will benefit children experiencing homelessness in Highline Public Schools.

Guests are invited to write and drop a New Year’s message into a wooden boat, built by a local high school class, which will be burned safely at 9 p.m., sending your messages off into the night.

There will be free parking at the nearby Des Moines Marina.

Come enjoy s’mores, games, entertainment, hot chocolate bar, a beer garden and more.

“Our mission is to enhance the quality of life in Des Moines by funding services for people in need with an emphasis on intervention and prevention,” organizers said.

The first event – held last year on New Year’s Eve 2022 – raised $22,035 which was presented to Valley Cities to fund mental health and substance use recovery in our community.

The 2023 ticket sales goal is 500, and funds are being raised directly to the Highline Schools Foundation.

For more info, or to buy tickets, please click below:


Here’s a video we produced about last year’s event:

More info here:

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