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Hunting Club Caters to Big Shots

Recreation: Oxnard game preserve attracts the rich and powerful who bag ducks and the occasional business deal.

December 15, 1996|SCOTT STEEPLETON | SPECIAL TO THE TIMES

OXNARD — Just steps from the Navy base at Point Mugu is a hideaway that has long beckoned men of wealth and power. To some it is like a golf club, and membership is a sign of your station in life.

But the 34 men who belong to this club are not interested in golf. They come to these 320 secluded acres off Hueneme Road in Oxnard to hunt ducks. The place is the Point Magu Game Preserve. Since 1929, when a portly character actor named Eugene Pallette decided to build a hideaway in Ventura County for his wealthy friends, it has been a place where politics and business make a great side dish, and duck is king.

The club is a hunter's dream: The 67-year-old clubhouse has a mess hall, bar, kitchen and locker room, and a cleaning room not far away. Photographs on the walls capture members past and present, including actors, politicians, bankers and local power brokers like Ed Carty, a developer and one-time partner

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