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The Catalina Islander
Avalon, California
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October 17, 2014     The Catalina Islander
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October 17, 2014
 

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SERVING CATALINA & ITS MAINLAND every week - since 1914 FRIENDS FRIDAY October 17, 2014 VOLUME 100, ISSUE 42 Www.THECATALINA|SLANDER.COM BRIEFS I Utilities Commission OKs Avalon water rate case On Thursday morning, Oct. 16, the California PublicUtilities Commission approved a proposal to have mainland electricity users share the cost of increased fresh water rates with Catalina resi- dents. The vote was 4-1. Water Level Update As of Thursday, Oct. 9, the Thompson Reservoir water level measured at 279 acre feet. The measurement for Oct. 1 was 283 acre feet. Avalon is currently in Stage 2 water rationing. October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month Breast cancer is a common can- cer among women but millions of women are surviving the disease thanks in part to early detection and improvements in treatment. See story, page 2 On the Water Fishing columnist Capt. John King says wahoo are notorious for swimming right through your fish- ing line. He describes the chal- lenges of fishing for the wahoo. See story, page 4 Chamber names new CEO The Catalina Island Chamber of Commerce and the CEO Search Committee reported recently that Jim Luttjohann, of the Santa Fe Convention and Visitors Bureau, has accepted its offer of employ- ment as the Chamber's next president and CEO. See story, page 5 Sheriff's Log The Los Angeles Sheriff's Department Avalon Station's Youth Activities League has made arrangements for Preston Pollard, the professional skateboarder from Alaska, to return to Catalina Island on Oct. 30. See story, page 5 CIMC disaster coordinator attends California preparedness conference Janet Seebert, the Catalina Island Medical Center's Disaster coor- dinator recently attended a state conference on disaster prepared- Bess. See story, page 6 Letters to the Editor Readers discuss the proposed sight for a new VOn's store and recall Leroy the Cat. See story, page 6 I Chamber CEO calls first decrease this year flat, good news BY CHARLES M. KELLY The Avalon High School Lancers' Homecoming Court left tq right: Madeline Hiniker, Jaime Alaniz, Irvin Gomez, Michaela Edwards, Gerardo Ventura, Viviana Chavoya, Andy Garcia, Ana Macias, Rebekah Perea, and Harrison Hobbs. For more on the Homecoming game and ceremonies, see page 8. Photo by Carlos Martinez I Outdoor facility to add to the of new facility COURTESY OF THE CATALINA For the first time since the early 1900s, an outdoor amphitheater will be at the center of Avalon's entertainment scene. The Ackerman Family Amphitheater is one of the most anticipated spaces in the Catalina Island Museum's Ada Blanche Wrigley Schreiner Building slated to open in 2015. was situated at the south end of Centered on the hillside at the Avalon and could seat 750 people. back of the building's second floor Afternoon and evening concerts and capable of seating approxi- occurred daily during the sum- mately 100 people, the amphi- met months. Used heavily till the theater will be surrounded by a 1930s, it is now forlorn and for- sculpture garden containing native gotten. and drought tolerant plants. Since then Avalon has lacked a Though not as large as Avalon's large outdoor venue with a proper original outdoor amphitheater con- seating area. This will all change structed by the Banning brothers in 2015, with the opening of the in 1904, the museum's amphithe- Ada Blanche Wrigley Schreiner ater was heavily influenced by it. Building. Often referred to as the Avalon "We wanted every square inch Bowl, the original amphitheater Amphitheater, Page 2 The September cross channel visitor count was 1.1 percent lower in 2014 than in 2013. The dip marked the first time this year that the visitor count was lower. In August, the visitor count was 3.3 percent higher than during the ' same period last year. But even though the cross chan- nel traffic decreased slightly in December, the year-to-date has seen slightly less than three-quar- ters of a million individuals visit the Island: 746,586 to be precise. In September, 87,247 visitors came to Catalina Island by both cross channel carriers and cruise ships, an increase of 13.5 percent. As previously reported in the Islander, the addition of a sec- ond Carnival Cruise vessel visiting the Island significantly increased visitor totals. For example, the September Cruise ship visitor count was 65.1 percent higher in 2014 than it was in 2013. Next year, the impact of the sec- ond cruise ship on visitor counts is not expected to be as pronounced. Outgoing Chamber CEO Wayne Griffin said he considered the 1.1 percent dip in the cross channel carrier traffic to be flat. (Griffin announced his retirement plans earlier this year. The Chamber named his successor Friday, Oct. Visitors, Page 8 BY JIM WATSON Editor's Note: This is the first in a three-part series. Jim Watson is the author of "'Mysterious Island: Catalina," avail- able on Amazon, Kindle and in stores in Avalon. Earlier this year I told you I was going to try out a new variation on this column called "Mysterious Island Goes to (fill in the blank)," and like any good newspaperman I follow through on my threats. This new feature will be a sort of "on the road" idea whereby I will leave the confines of the Isle of Ro- mance and venture out into the so-called real world. From these distant lands, I will bring you the same tales of strangeness and amazingness that you have all come to know and tolerate. Thus, this first column in a se- Watson, Page 4 The Stratosphere Casino, Hotel and Tower is Strip has seen events and circumstances as Photo by Jim Watson located just north of the Las Vegas Strip. The mysterious as those found on Catalina Island.