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The Catalina Islander
Avalon, California
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August 31, 2012     The Catalina Islander
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August 31, 2012
 

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SERVING CATALINA  ITS MAINLAND FRIENDS every week - since 1914 VOLUME 98, ISSUE 35 F,,,,, August 31, 2012 ........ i .......................................... ' ............................. BRI[FS Wrigley exhibit opens at the Museum tonight The exhibition about the life of William Wrigley, Jr. opens tonight, Friday, Aug. 31, during a reception at the Catalina Island Museum. "A Democratic Dream: William Wrigley Jr. and Catalina Island" explores one of the 20th century's most successful businessmen and his quest to make Catalina Island into a world-class resort destination for the "rank and file" of America. See story, page 6 Women's Forum 2012 Wine Festival Approaches Tickets for the 17th Annual Catalina Island Women!s Forum Wine Festival are available for purchase online at www.theciwf. org. The festival will be held from 2 to 5 p.m., Saturday, Sept. 15, on the Descanso side of Casino Point, home of the historic Casino Building. See story, page 12 Catalina Rediscovered In 1888, the over-optimistic spec- ulative buying boom in Southern California had hit a major bump and George Shatto was having trouble selling his parcels of land for anything close to what he had hoped to get. See story, page 3 J. Paul DeMyer named new medical corporation chair J. Paul DeMyer was recently named the chair of the Avalon Medical Development Corporation Board of Directors. DeMyer replaces Rose Ellen Gardner, the immediate past chair of the board, who will continue on as a board member for the next year. See story, page 4 Beach cleanup Saturday Volunteers will clean one of the windward beaches on Saturday, Sept. 8. The van leaves Avalon at 8 a.m. from the Conservancy House, 125 Clarissa Ave. Call Volunteer Coordinator Lesly Lieberman at (310) 510-2595, ext. 112 to make reservations. Island Co. to build new spa The Santa Catalina Island Company has announced that it will build a new, full-service resort spa in Avalon to serve as a year- round destination for visitors. El Encanto Marketplace will be reno- vated and renamed Encanto Spa Catalina. See story, page 6 Meeting Set for PLAY Preschool parents Pre-School Learning for Avalon Youth, Catalina's co-op pre- school, will have its mandatory final enrollment meeting for all new and returning students at 6:30 p.m., Wednesday, Sept. 5, at the Bird Park school. See story, = page 4 s seizes a of marijuana off Catalina THREE CA, LIFORNIANSAND FOUR MEXICAN CITIZENS FACE SMUGGLING CHARGES BY CHARLES M. KELLY Twins, Ashton and Slater and their older brother Ethan Bray, urge their dad, Harbor Master Brian Bray, to enjoy the sweet {aste of the pie that was pushed into his face as part of the fundraising efforts of the Church Mouse Invitational Marlin Tournament.Photo by Jennifer Leonhardi IChurch Mouse raises $55K THE 22ND ANNUAL MARLIN TOURNAMENT FUNDS WILL BENEFIT AVALON YOUTH BY DENNIS KAISER Squeals of laughter pierced the air in- side the Casino Ballroom on Tuesday as Paige Creigh smashed a creamy pie into the face of Harbor Master Brian Bray. Bray's young sons, Ethan, Ashton and Slater, surrounded their dad and begged him not to waste the delicious creamy pie on his face by merely wiping it off, but to eat as much of it as he could. Thus the after-party for the 22nd An- nual Church Mouse Marlin Invitational Tournament came to a hilarious crescendo with the traditional theatrics of the "pieing" event that has been a part of the tournament's celebrations for years. Creigh was given the honor of throwing the pie from Jim Smith of ',High Cotton," Who had pur- chased it for a $750 donation this year. I[ was part of the proceeds that helped the marlin tournament net about $55,000 this year at the last count. The money, as usual, will be distributed to various children's pro- grams in Avalon. Since its inception, the event has raised'nearly $1 million for the cause. Longtime, frequent Island visitors Bob and Carol Butte started the Church Mouse marlin tournament more than two decades ago. They continue to run it with a passion for its success and an eye  on seeing tha t all participants have fun while giving back to the community. For the Butte's the Church Mouse is a fam- ily affair with the couple's two daughters, Maggie and Kim, as well as other family members and friends pitching in during the family's "Church Mouse season" and during the actual event.  2,, 2m " "The bone -'fish'--iaries of this success- ful tournament will be announced when the dust clears," said Carol Butte. There were 69 boats that according to Butte "fished their hearts out" over this past Monday and Tuesday. As usual, the event concluded witha gala event held in the iconic casino ballroom Tuesday eve- ning. The Casino Ballroom sported dozens of prizes such as brand new fishing rods for anglers of a.ll ages. The stage was, covered in donated fishing rods, reels, Churchmouse, Page 9 It happened again. For the sec- ond time in two years, authorities found suspected marijuana smug- glers in the waters off Catalina Is- land. Customs agents arrested seven marijuana smuggling suspects and seized approximately one ton of pot in Catalina waters on Wednesday, Aug. 22. The suspects made their initial appearances in federal court Thursday, Aug. 23, on drug charges stemming from their alleged role in an attempt to smuggle more than a ton of marijuana into the United States from Mexico onboard a sail- boat and a panga. The seven defen- dants have been charged with im- porting a controlled substance. Three suspects were U.S. citi- zens from Long Beach and Hun- tington Beach. A third suspect was from San C!emente. The remaining suspects were Mexican nationals. Last week's pot seizure was neither the first off Catalina, nor was it a record breaking event. In 2010, authorities seized two tons of marijuana off Catalina--a record- breaking $3 million bust. On April 18, 2010, Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department offi- cers seized 4,000 pounds of mari- juana off Catalina Island. It was the largest drug seizure in Catalina history. Three Mexican nationals were arrested and charged. At the time, then-Avalon Sheriff's Station Commander Lt. Jeff Donahue said Bust, Page 10 MYSTERIOUS ISLAND Catalina's facts, folklore and fibs This Week: Windward Weirdness BY JIM WATSON Catalina has long been a hot- bed of UFO sightings going back even before the advent of the "Age of UFOS" beginning in the late 1940s. Just about anyone who's spent any amount of time in the Hills over the years will tell you they've seen "something" that they couldn't explain. Back in the early 1990s, Don Salvo was camping at Ben Weston beach. Isaac Felix happened to be there camping at the. same time. Nothing unusual about that. But on this particular occasion, sometime after midnight, they both noticed what appeared to be an unusual "craft" of some kind hovering low to the beach. Both Don and Isaac said it was too dark to make out any details about the craft, but that they could see it moving against the stars. What- ever it was, they said, was com- pletely silent. The craft then came to a stop while hovering above the .beach and suddenly emitted three quick flashes of light. Once finished with that, the craft rapidly ascended out of view once again. But the weirdness was only be- ginning. Don said that the next morning a US Marine Corps Sikor- sky SH-1 Seahawk (the Navy's version of the legendary "Black- Could military drones like this Sikorsky Cypher VTOL be respon- sible for some of Catalina's UFO sightings? Such an encounter may have occurred on Catalina's windward side several years ago. hawk") began flying around the beach. Shortly after thaf, a civilian helicop- ter actually landed on the beach and out of it climbed several Japanese men in blaok suits and ties who then proceeded to look around the area. They didn't approach Don or Isaac, even though they were obviously aware of their presence. Instead, these "men in black" just inspected the beach area for a while before climbing back into the chopper and taking off. Similar to this story is an account that former Islander Jim Lehr told me that happened to him at about roughly the same time frame, the 1990s. One morning about 3 a.m., Jim was up and about his condo at Sol Vista. From his living room he looked toward the back of Avalon Watson, Page 13