Byline: Taylor Hill
AVALON — The 17th annual Catalina Island Conservancy Ball will return to the historic Avalon Casino Ballroom April 14 — and the black-tie event is expected to once again fill the world’s largest circular ballroom with dancing, silent and live auctions, live music and dinner festivities.
The conservancy — which is charged with preserving approximately 80 percent of Catalina Island — uses the ball as its main fundraising event, with more than $3 million raised since 1996.
The conservancy was placed in charge of nearly 42,000 acres of land on Catalina Island by members of the Wrigley and Offield families in 1972, to preserve the island for future visitors to enjoy.
Forty years later, the conservancy is proud of its accomplishments — including one of the fastest recoveries on record of the endangered Catalina Island fox, the opening of the popular 37.2-mile Trans-Catalina Trail and groundbreaking conservation efforts such as “Stop the Spread,” a program aimed at building public participation in eradicating non-native plants.
Tickets for the Conservancy Ball are now on sale, and they can only be obtained online by visiting catalinaconservancy.org. Guests may also register as a sponsor for this special anniversary celebration. Individual tickets are $250 per person, while sponsorships start at $1,500.
One of the many benefits of sponsorship is access to the Pre-Ball Sponsor Reception. This year, sponsors will visit Casa del Monte, originally the home of Philip and Helen Wrigley. Casa del Monte overlooks Avalon Bay, and it is the site where the first discussions to form the conservancy took place.
This year’s event is being hosted by Balboa Yacht Club, which is celebrating its 90th anniversary. The club has arranged for a chartered boat service to and from Avalon the night of the ball, for those looking for an easy way to get to the island.
The cost is $100 per person and reservations are required. To reserve a seat, call Pattii at Balboa Yacht Club at (949) 673-3515, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
To request a formal invitation to the ball, email your contact information to Kathy Perriman at: email@example.com.