Catalina Island Conservancy is an organization that was established by the Wrigley’s family in 1972 to protect and restore the island. The Conservancy recently celebrated another important milestone in their long-range strategic plan, Imagine Catalina. The event was attended by many supporters at the site of the new visitors’ center, The Trailhead, on Crescent Avenue, which is the main passage for visitors who come to the island by ferry.
“The Trailhead is a flagship project for Imagine Catalina, a long-term strategic vision to guide the Conservancy for the next 20-plus years,” said Ann Muscat, President and CEO of the Catalina Island Conservancy. “The Trailhead will be a game-changer for the Conservancy, dramatically increasing the organization’s presence in Avalon. It will give us the opportunity to share with visitors and residents the uniqueness of Catalina, why it is an ecological treasure and how they can participate in taking care of it.”
The new visitors’ center will feature educational exhibits and programs to help the visitors learn the history and geology of Santa Catalina Island, as well as know more about the mission of the Conservancy. The building will have three decks to offer a view of Avalon, surrounding islands, and the bay. In addition to that, there would be multipurpose banquet halls for weddings, community meets, Conservancy events, and more.
Authorities said that the Trailhead would also offer a portal to the wild side of the island with the help of the Wildlands Express Shuttle Service and the Wrigley Memorial & Botanic Garden. Moreover, the Trailhead would be a gathering spot for the visitors, where they could get all the required information on hiking, camping, and biking in Catalina Island.
The Trailhead would be Avalon’s first LEED certified building, and to fulfill the requirements, the building will feature state of the art water management and saving system. This system will have a water-harvesting unit to collect and reuse rainwater for non-potable uses like landscaping.
“We are so grateful to our generous donors and supporters who have made The Trailhead and Trekking Catalina possible,” said Muscat. “Their gifts are helping us fulfill one of the major goals of Imagine Catalina by creating opportunities for people to connect to the land through nature-based recreational and educational opportunities.”