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San Fernando Valley : FANTASY RETREAT

August 09, 1995

A neighborhood dispute that started out loud and angry ended quietly Tuesday when the County Board of Supervisors restricted activities at the privately owned Fantasy Island theme park in Agoura.

Avihu Datner, the owner of the 3-year-old retreat, had wanted the board to approve his request to place a motion picture studio and a zoo on the 23-acre oak forest in the Santa Monica Mountains.

Datner's neighbors in the rural canyon area protested, claiming Datner's operation already made too much noise and attracted too many people.

Fantasy Island has a restaurant, dance pavilion, several waterfalls, fish ponds and mood lighting. It is popular for weddings and bar mitzvahs.

After Datner's plans to expand the resort were denied by the county's planning commission this spring, Datner appealed to the Board of Supervisors.

During several public hearings, foes debated the project's merits, and Datner persuaded more than 6,000 people to write letters on his behalf to Supervisor Zev Yaroslavsky, who represents the area.

Yaroslavsky visited the site, but drew up the plan passed by the board that denies Datner his zoo and movie studio, and orders him to limit the noise from the retreat's dance pavilion.

Datner did not appear for Tuesday's board meeting.

Neither he nor his lawyer could be reached for comment.

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