Catalina Island Events 2011


Avalon 50 Mile Benefit Run
January 15

This will be the 30th Anniversary of the Avalon 50 Mile Benefit Run!! It’s one of the country’s most challenging and scenic 50-milers- no cars, no smog- just great terrain, incredible views, fascinating historical sites, a well-organized race, nice people, great food and an occasional buffalo sighting.

Buffalo Run
January 22

The Buffalo Run is the ultimate in trail running using the East End trails of Catalina Island. This half marathon course takes you from sea level to a 1600 foot elevation then returns to sea level. You will experience spectacular views of San Clemente Island and Avalon. The race also features the popular flat and fast 5k course. Many parts of the half marathon course are in areas that are not accessible by the public without permits. The course is beautiful, with unbelievable vistas and pristine trails that few get to traverse.


Museum Exhibit Opening
February 5, 2011 – April 30, 2011

The Boys in Blue: Cubs Spring Training on Catalina Island, 1921-1951
The Boys in Blue presents the Catalina Island Museum’s extensive collection of Cub’s programs, rosters, uniforms, film footage and photographs. Visit this unique exhibition and live the glory days of Cubbies baseball!

Valentine’s Dance in the Casino Ballroom
February 12

One of the most celebrated traditions on the Island of Romance, the Valentine’s Sweetheart Dance, is coming back to the Casino Ballroom and will feature ‘Death by Chocolate’ dessert bar. Couples can dance the night away in the beautiful Art-Deco Casino Ballroom, this event promises to be better than ever. Music by ‘Ace of Heart’.

Avalon Harbor Underwater Cleanup Watch Video
February 26

The Avalon Harbor Underwater Cleanup, hosted by the Catalina Conservancy Divers, is an annual dive event held in Avalon Harbor at Catalina Island once a year on the Saturday following President’s Day. The event was started in the 1970’s by the local dive community in an effort to cleanup Avalon Harbor, and this event is the only time diving is permitted there. The event has grown over the years to become one of the most publicized and popular dive events in Southern California.


Catalina Island Marathon
March 12

Enjoy some of the most breathtaking scenery while running 26.2 miles over the Island of Catalina. The race traverses mostly dirt trails and roads through areas of the interior of the Island where very few have gone. The race starts in Two Harbors and runs to Avalon. It is a hilly, challenging Marathon, but worth every mile! Who knows, you may even run with some buffalos!

Avalon International Film Festival ***Cancelled***
March 25-27

Come visit the historic vacation spot March 25-27 to experience the latest independent films and mingle with Hollywood insiders. Overlooking beautiful and historic Avalon Bay on Catalina Island, the iconic Catalina Casino Theatre and Ballroom will be the venue for the first annual Avalon International Film Festival (AIFF) held March 25-27, 2011, which will spotlight works from around the world created by both amateur and professional filmmakers in categories ranging from short animations to international feature films and documentaries.

Ohana Catalina Challenge
March 27

The Catalina Challenge is California’s premier relay event. Avalon to Dana point is 39.8 miles, Although generally calm conditions, This event will challenge any paddler. Teams consist of 2, 3, and 4 members. Racing on Single and Double Outriggers or Surfski’s, as well as Stand up Surfboards and Paddleboards.


Catalina Island Conservancy Ball
April 9

Since the first Ball in 1996, the Catalina Island Conservancy, steward of the Island’s lands, has raised almost $3 million for its many Island projects in conservation, education and recreation through this annual event. This year the Conservancy is excited to partner with Newport Harbor Yacht Club to present an exciting evening themed “Catalina’s Gold” at the 16th Catalina Island Conservancy Ball.

Rubber Ducky Derby
April 10
Annual fundraising event to sponsor the local children’s theatre company. The rubber ducky derby begins at noon on South Beach. For more information contact Kids at Play at (310) 510-0288.

Earth Day
April 16
10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. – Explore the natural side of Catalina Island and enjoy music, food and fun for the entrie family and learn about making Planet Earth more sustainable. FREE. Location: Avalon City Park. Information: 310-510-0954

Spring Fest
April 21
5:00 p.m.-9:00 p.m. Live Music – Food – Games – Booths – A Great Event for the Whole Family!
Location: Crescent Ave – Information: Recreation Dept. 310-510-1987.

Art Fair and Exhibition
April 22-24
The Catalina Art Association will be hosting the 2nd Annual CAFE (Catalina Art Fair & Exhibition).


Hyperbaric Chamber Day
May 4

Chamber Day is not only a fund-raiser for our Catalina Hyperbaric Chamber, but also the largest single-day scuba charity event in the United States.

Santa Catalina Film Festival
May 6-8

Don’t miss the inaugural Santa Catalina Film Festival May 6-8 in Avalon on Catalina Island. The Festival will celebrate the art and entertainment of film in all of its forms and will also celebrate the Island’s rich history and beauty.

Museum Exhibit Opening
May 7, 2011 – July 31, 2011

Yesterday and Today: The Beatles and Eric Clapton as Photographed by Pattie Boyd
One of the most beautiful models of the “Swinging 60s London,” Pattie Boyd’s marriage to George Harrison in 1966 allowed her to witness personally the revolution The Beatles inspired in fashion, art and music. After separating from Harrison in 1974, she married Eric Clapton, a man who continues to be regarded as one of the greatest blues guitarists of our era. Yesterday and Today lends an intimate view into the lives of George Harrison, Eric Clapton, The Beatles and Pattie Boyd herself.

Rugby Festival
May 7
The 2011 Old Boy’s Rugby Tournament will maintain the traditional format – rugby on Saturday May 7, recovery on Sunday May 8.

Silent Film Benefit
May 14

Don’t miss this rare chance to enjoy the 1927 silent film ‘The Sea Hawk’ starring Milton Sills, Enid Bennett and Wallace Beery with live organ accompaniment by Robert D. Salisbury in the Art Deco splendor of one of California’s last remaining movie palaces. This film is one of many classics filmed on and around Catalina Island in the 1920′s. Information: (310) 510-2414

The Avalon Ball
May 14

Dress in your best vintage, evening attire or fantasy costume and dance the Lindy Hop, Jitterbug, Balboa, The Charleston, Tango, Foxtrot, The Waltz and more at the historic Avalon Casino Ballroom. Reservations: 310-659-3326.


Flying Fish Festival
June 2-5
4th Annual Flying Fish Festival is a four day event to celebrate the return of the incomparable Catalina Flying Fish with a variety of family fun themed activities.

Taste Around Watch Video
June 2

Sample tastes fom some of Avalon’s finest dining establishments. Vote for your favorite taste of food and drink as the Taste of the Year.

Wooden Boat Building Watch Video
June 5

Don’t miss the 2nd Annual Wooden Boat Building event during the Flying Fish Festival. This was the highlight of the 2010 Flying Fish Festival.

Plein Air Art Show
June 11

Catalina: The Wild Side Art Show will be held from 2 to 5 p.m. at the Catalina Country Club. On display for sale will be the work of nine nationally acclaimed plein air artists displaying their interpretations of Catalina’s rugged interior and the quaint town of Avalon.


Pattie Boyd Book Signing
July 2

A Rare Personal Appearance and Book Signing by Pattie Boyd
Pattie Boyd’s recently published book Wonderful Tonight, George Harrison, Eric Clapton, and Me, reached number one on the New York Times’ bestseller list. The public is invited to a rare personal appearance of Pattie Boyd at the Catalina Island Museum.

Annual Parade & Fireworks
July 4

1:00 p.m. – Join us for our famous parade down Crescent Avenue led by the USC Marching Band. This year’s there is “Spirit of America.”
9:00 p.m. – Fireworks display over Avalon Bay. Additional Information

Gold Star Dive
July 16

Skin and scuba divers search for gold stars in Casino Point Underwater Park. This event is a fundraiser for the Sheriff’s Department S.T.A.R. (Success Through Awareness and Resistance) program and the Catalina Hyperbaric Chamber. For more information call the LA County Sheriff’s Department (310) 510-0174.

Catalina Ski Race
July 16

The Greatest Water Ski Race in the World! Water skiers from around the globe come once a year to California determined to finish the 62 statute-mile race. Being a part of this great race, attracts the world’s greatest skiers. Long Beach to Catalina and back.


Museum Exhibit Opening
August 6, 2011 – October 31, 2011

Before She Was Marilyn: Marilyn Monroe on Catalina Island
Before She Was Marilyn represents the first major exhibition documenting the early life of Marilyn Monroe, and exhibits for the first time photographs from not only the Catalina Island Museum’s own archive but from archives throughout America. Candid and often disturbing, the exhibition offers an unparalleled view into the year Norma Jeane spent on Santa Catalina Island. Additional Information

Wine Festival
August 13

16th annual fundraiser featuring over 80 wineries, delectable hors d’oeuvres and smooth jazz. Net proceeds help support mentoring and scholarship programs. (310) 510-1520

Church Mouse Marlin Tournament
August 29-30

Non-profit marlin fishing tournament, all proceeds donated to Catalina youth. More than $700,000 has been raised over the last 18 years! For more information call (310) 467-2371.


53rd Festival of Art
September 16-18

Artists from all over the country exhibit and sell their works of fine art, sculpture, fine crafts and photography. Catalina Art Association (310) 510-2788.


Jazz Trax
October 6-23 (Thursday-Sunday)

JazzTrax is a three weekend event featuring 30 different smooth jazz artists performing unplugged under the stars at Descanso Beach Club Thursday evenings and in the historic Casino Ballroom Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Art Good features the newest and best talent in the smooth jazz genre.

Halloween Parade
October 31

4:00 p.m. – Don your favorite costume and join island school kids and residents for the annual Halloween Parade down Crescent Avenue.


Santa Catalina Triathlon
November 5

The Santa Catalina Triathlon features a half-mile swim in the calm waters of Avalon Bay, a 15K three-loop cycle course to Wrigley Memorial and Botanical Garden and a 3K run course through the streets of Avalon.

Museum Exhibit Opening
November 12, 2100 – January 29, 2012

Celebrity Playground: Hollywood’s Favorite Island
Relive Catalina Island’s glory days in Celebrity Playground; an exhibition that presents the Catalina Island Museum’s extensive archive of material related to the many celebrities who played and worked on Hollywood’s favorite island.

Eco Marathon
November 12

The Catalina Eco Marathon will start and finish in the town of Avalon. Run through three entirely different eco-systems and see the plant life and animal life in each. (909) 399-3553.

Jazz Dance Festival
November 18-20

This unique and special dance camp experience celerates teh Swing Era (1935-1946) for a full weekend of live music and dance classes in the world famous Casino Ballroom. (619) 347-9366


Shop at Home
December 4

18th Annual Shop at Home Night is a one-night shopping extravaganza with holiday discounts, strolling carolers and prize drawings. The event kicks off with the holiday tree lighting ceremony on Wrigley Stage. Get your picture taken with Santa when you bring 2 canned goods for a food drive to El Galleon from 6pm-8:30pm. (310) 510-1520.

El Galleon Restaurant Annual New Year’s Eve Party
December 31

9:30pm to 1am. Includes party favors and champagne at midnight. For tickets and dinner reservations call (310) 510-1188.

39th Annual New Year’s Eve Celebration, Casino Ballroom
December 31

Dance in the New Year at this black-tie optional event in the world famous Casino Ballroom. Reservations will go on sale July 2011. (310) 510-1520.