Sun, sand and surf on Catalina Island
Before the summer ends there’s still time to jump on a boat and head to Southern California’s very own island paradise — a place where the hurried pace of mainland life shifts to island time.
Catalina is California’s only island resort destination, making it an excellent choice for a relaxing Southern California getaway. It’s an hour away on a high-speed catamaran, or an even quicker ride if you take a helicopter. You can be relaxing in an island paradise in the time it takes to get across town.
The weather on the island in late summer and early fall is delightfully warm and sunny, with water temperatures warm enough to enjoy all the activities Catalina is famous for: boating, snorkeling and relaxing at the beach.
Accommodations on Catalina run the gamut — from tent site camping to beachfront hotels, from family-friendly inns to well-appointed condos, from charming cottage vacation rentals to an elegant four-star country inn. You can stay in a luxurious ocean-view suite or take the whole family to a comfortable beach bungalow close to town. Whatever your budget, Catalina has a place for you to unwind and rejuvenate.
Fall brings a fantastic array of events to the island. Wine, art, jazz and more. Does it get any better than that? Sip wine at the Women’s Forum Wine Festival, stroll along the art-filled waterfront promenade during the Festival of Art, or groove to smooth jazz in the iconic Casino Ballroom during the JazzTrax Festival.
Here’s what’s in store on Catalina Island in the next couple months.
Sept. 2, 7:30 p.m.
The Sirens (Top 40 and more) FREE concert at Wrigley Stage
Beer and Wine Garden opens at 6 p.m. www.catalinachamber.com/concerts
Catalina Island Women’s Forum Wine Festival
17th annual fundraiser featuring over 70 wineries, delectable hors d’oeuvres and smooth jazz. Net proceeds help support mentoring and scholarship programs. www.theciwf.org
Sept. 21 to 23
54th Annual Festival of Art
Artists from all over the country exhibit along Crescent Avenue’s waterfront and sell their works of fine art, sculpture, fine crafts and photography at the island’s longest-standing festival. www.catalinaartassociation.org
Catalina Island Conservancy Half Marathon
Runners enjoy the expansive Catalina Island interior with its spectacular vistas while being challenged by the rugged terrain. www.runcatalina.com
Sept. 29 and 30
Catalina Air Show
The first Catalina Island Air Show commemorates the 100th anniversary of the longest over-water flight in the world at the time and the first sea landing in history in Avalon Bay. Located off the breakwater of Avalon Bay. Aviation events include both military and civilian aerobatic aircraft and concessions. www.catalinaairshow.com
California Billfish Series
The series consists of three striped marlin tournaments that attract the West Coast’s most avid fishing teams. The Zane Grey Invitational kicks off the series Sept. 9 to 11, while the Avalon Billfish Classic and the Catalina Classic run simultaneously from Sept. 23 to 25. www.catalinaclassic.com
September through November
A Democratic Dream: William Wrigley Jr. and Catalina Island Exhibition at the Catalina Island Museum
The “Democratic Dream” exhibit explores Wrigley’s pursuit of the American dream and his vision for Catalina Island as a “playground for all”— rich and poor, young and old.
Oct. 4 to 7, 11 to 14 and 18 to 21
Catalina Island JazzTrax Festival
Catalina Island’s JazzTrax Festival is a three-weekend showcase of contemporary jazz entertainment, featuring the newest and best in smooth jazz. Voted the Best Jazz Festival in America in 2011, the Catalina Island JazzTrax Festival is one of the West Coast’s foremost fall music events. The festival, which starts Oct. 4 and continues until Oct. 21, is held in the legendary Casino Ballroom on Catalina Island, with special Thursday performances held under the stars at the Descanso Beach Club.
Thirty of the smooth jazz genre’s top performers will be on hand for this year’s event. Ten different acts will appear each weekend, with both afternoon and evening concerts scheduled. Performers include Mindy Abair, Gerald Albright, Brian Culbertson, Booker T. Jones, Big Bad Voodoo Daddy, Hiroshima,
Najee and many more of the world’s best jazz performing artists. For tickets and information call 866.872.9849 or visit www.jazztrax.com.
To enter to win a trip to Catalina for the JazzTrax Festival Unplugged Concert on Oct. 18, go to www.catalinachamber.com, click “specials and packages,” then click “enter to win.”
28th Annual Catalina Island Triathlon
Swim it, bike it, run it, “tri” it! Experience the beauty of Catalina Island and the city of Avalon with the perfect end-of-season triathlon. www.runcatalina.com
Nov. 9 to 11
Catalina Swing Dance Festival
This unique and special dance camp experience celebrates the Swing Era (1935-1946) for a full weekend of live music and dance classes in the world-famous Casino Ballroom. www.2plyswing.com
Catalina Island Eco-Marathon
Run over 20 miles of single-track trails and ridgelines with views of the Pacific Ocean on both sides of the island. Run through a variety of eco-systems, each with unique plant and animal life.
For additional information on Catalina accommodations, attractions, tours and upcoming events, contact the Catalina Island Chamber of Commerce at www.catalinachamber.com or 866.228.1204.