San Francisco… 1935. During the depression San Francisco was not much different then most other cities in the United States. The economy was depressed and there were men out of work. The Golden Gate and Bay Bridge projects were underway which helped a bit, and the port provided some jobs, but not enough to go around.
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This is another Catalina favorite… think of it as a milkshake for adults! There are several bars on the island that make this drink and the recipe can vary a little. As you can see, there is no buffalo milk in the drink… I don’t think I would even try to milk a buffalo! I understand they get pissed off easily!
- 1/2 shot Crème de Cacao dark
- 1/2 shot Crème de Cacao white
- 1/2 shot Kahlua
- 1 shot vodka
- 1/2 shot cream
- 1/2 piece of a fresh banana
- 1 sprinkle of nutmeg
- 1 whipped cream topping
Add everything except the last two items in a blender half full of ice. Blend until smooth and pour into a glass. Add a dab of whipped cream and sprinkle with nutmeg on top.
Santa Catalina Island Golf
When Your Home Golf Course Is Catalina Island
Golf is often referred to as the game you love to hate. No matter how good you think you are, the “Golf Gods” are always ready and able to knock you down and return you back to earth. You might be able to string together a couple of good holes. You get a couple of pars, then you get that birdie and start feeling really good about your game… then that double or triple boogie comes along; the horrible sand trap; the deadly water hazard, and you quickly become mortal again. It’s the great equalizer in life and even happens to the great ones. How many of us smile just a little when you watch golf on TV and see a great pro player have that horrible hole just like the rest of us. Since I play for fun and don’t have to depend on my game to support myself (thank God!), I try not to take the game too seriously.
I have been fortunate to have played some of the most beautiful courses in the world, the Olympic Club, the Old Del Monte Course, The Presidio S.F., Cabo del Sol, just to name a few, but there is nothing like playing island golf. “Mainland” courses are pretty, but when you add golf to an island, the courses become truly beautiful.
I have played the Tryall Club Course in Jamaica, the Waikoloa King’s Course and Wailea Golf Club Hawaii, the Pearl in Morea, the Coronado and yes, I have even played at St. Andrews in Scotland. What they all have in common is that they are located on islands! What I consider to be my “home island course” is here on Catalina.
All the courses I have listed above have their own unique histories. Many have hosted major tournaments and as we all know, St. Andrews is the legendary home of golf. We here in Catalina have a great deal to be proud of with our course history as well. Our course was built by the Banning Brothers in 1892 and is the oldest operating course west of the Rock Mountains. Not only has the Catalina course been played by numerous movie stars, athletes and celebrities over the years but is was the home to the Bobby Jones Invitational from 1931-1955. The Catalina Island Junior Golf Tournament started in 1967. Future pro golfers, Corey Pavin, Craig Stadler and Tiger Woods played in the tournament.
If you visit Catalina, take a little time to enjoy golf here. And for those of us who play here on a regular basis, next time you play a round, take a moment to remember the history, enjoy the beauty and realize how fortunate we are to be in such a special place.
Reprinted from the Catalina Islander February 10, 2017
Seaplanes in Catalina
Sea Planes have been crossing from the California mainland to the Channel Islands for almost a century. The first service was operated by Charlie Chaplin’s half-brother Syd in 1919. Operating for a couple of years, other firms moved in to operate the service until 1931 when Wrigley stepped up.
Phillip K. Wrigley, began the Wilmington-Catalina Airline, Ltd. through his Santa Catalina Island Company, and took over the sea plane services. The airline’s fleet were mostly comprised of Douglas Dolphin’s designed by Donald Douglas.
In 1931, Wrigley helped design a unique airport at Hamilton Cove, the 2nd cove north of Avalon, to accommodate the Douglas Dolphin ‘Amphibion’ planes. The twin-engine Dolphins landed just offshore & would taxi up a ramp to a large turntable mechanism. The airplane would then be rotated until it was facing the water & ready for a trip back to the mainland. A small Spanish-style terminal building welcomed residents, business people & tourists to Catalina.” There was also a large hanger behind the terminal building.
According the Catalina Goose, Wilmington-Catalina Air Line was noted in the March 1941 issue of Flying & Popular Aviation as “the shortest airline in the world.” The article points out that not only was Wilmington-Catalina Air Line, serving 2 towns less than 30 miles apart, the shortest but also the safest airline, having flown the channel 38,000 times carrying over 200,000 passengers with no accidents or injuries between 1931-41.
Seaplane service was discontinued & replaced by a landplane base in the spring of 1941 and following the entry of the USA into WWII, civilian air traffic to Catalina Island was shut down and the Coast Guard took over the Hamilton Cove Seaplane Base.
Wrecks offer great places to dive and they are located all over the world. As technology evolves divers are able to go to sites much deeper than in past years however those dives involve greater risk to the diver and advanced training. In my younger days I did dive to much deeper wrecks but now I focus on shallower sites within what is referred to as “sport diver limits”. Wrecks provide areas that attract wide varieties of marine life and many of the sites have interesting stories attached to them. All of the sites I will post on this web site are wrecks that are within the sport diver limits of no more than 130 feet down. When you travel on a dive trip, the local dive shop can be the focal point to find those interesting sites that are attractions in the area. Sometimes, if you are lucky, you can find a local who will take you to a site that’s not on the tourist trail.
Airplane wreck – Mexico. As with most airplane wrecks, it’s upside down and now a home for the fish.
Airplane wreck found upside down…somewhere in the Bermuda Triangle. The story is that it’s the results of a drug smuggling operation gone wrong.
USS Bluegill WWII submarine once located in 130’ of water off Lahaina, HI. This is the view looking up at the conning tower.
Divers swimming along the deck of the USS Bluegill towards the bow. These photos were taken during the late 1970’s before the boat was relocated to very deep water out of the range of divers.
Dive conditions were a bit murky on the day of the USS Bluegill dive. This is the base of the conning tower looking forward. The boat was used as a training location for Navy divers and a popular site for recreational divers before being relocated.
This is the wreck of the “Baby Barge”, a small barge that was sunk to become a reef near Honolulu, HI. The bubbles are from the divers under and in the wreckage.
This turtle was taking a nap on the wreck of the YO-257, a Navy fueling vessel from WWII, before the divers woke him up! There were three turtles hanging around the wreck when we arrived.
These are the oil pump connections on the YO-257 used in pumping oil during the refueling process. The YO-257 was 174’ long and now home to much marine life.
The top structure of the YO-257. I love diving on wrecks, partly because of the history of the ships and partly because they attract a wide variety of marine life. The YO-257 was intentionally sunk off Honolulu to become a reef structure in 1989.
A short swim from the YO-257 lies the wreck of the San Pedro. The 111’ vessel was sunk as a reef off Honolulu, HI in 1996. Two turtle gracefully swim into the wreckage.
This is my youngest son, James, diving with me to a sunken sailboat at about 125’deep in the Caribbean. The boat was about 50’ long and was now the home of tropical fish and moray eels.
This turtle was located during a night dive on a sunken sugarcane barge that sunk off a small Caribbean island in about 30’ of water. It makes a perfect sleeping station for the turtles. They find a comfortable spot on deck to sleep and when they need air, it’s a short swim to the surface then back to the boat for more sleep. The remora on his back just tags along for the ride.
On the way to the sugarcane barge this ray went swimming by in the darkness.
Back to the waters off Catalina Island. These are Sheepshead fish. The larger black and red one is a male and the smaller red one is a female. These are one of my favorite fish to spear. They make great fish tacos. Very tasty!
The Garibaldi is a brightly colored orange fish of the damselfish family that is native to the North-Eastern subtropical parts of the Pacific Ocean, ranging from Monterey Bay, California, to Baja California. The name is a reference to the Italian military and political figure Giuseppe Garibaldi who wore a trademark red shirt.
Not only is this fish a regular sight whilst diving off Santa Catalina, it is also the official marine state fish of California.