CATALINA ISLAND—Any Catalina history buff (and most people who have the pleasure to experience Catalina Island, for that matter) know the impact William Wrigley Jr. had on the island. Wrigley purchased the island in 1919, which paved the way for it to become a major celebrity getaway spot and, famously, a Spring Training ground for the Chicago Cubs, the baseball team he also owned. One hundred years later, Catalina Island will entertain several special events that coincide with the centennial of Wrigley buying the island.
In a release by Catalina Island Company, it stated: “This year marks the centennial of chewing gum magnate William Wrigley Jr.’s purchase of the Catalina Island Company … To commemorate this momentous milestone, visitors will be able to enjoy several new experiences, including two Anniversary Tours that take a nostalgic journey through Avalon, and a special Catalina Island Museum exhibit celebrating Wrigley’s first year on the island and the decade that followed. Visitors will also be able to enjoy flashback menu items, once served at historic venues such as Hotel St. Catherine, now available for a limited time at Catalina Island Company restaurants.”
The two anniversary guided tours mentioned are: Wrigley’s Catalina, which takes guests on a scenic one-hour-and-fifteen-minute jaunt around the island; and, Magnificent Mt. Ada, a two-hour tour of the Wrigley’s famous home. For Wrigley’s Catalina, tickets are $39.95 for adults and $37.95 for seniors, military and children. Magnificent Mt. Ada tours are $69.95 for adults and $65.95 for seniors, military and children.
Hotel Atwater, one of Avalon’s historic hotels that originally opened to the public in 1920, will also reopen in August. Named for Philip Knight Wrigley’s wife, Helen Atwater Wrigley, the hotel is currently accepting reservations beginning on August 18, 2019.
Catalina Island Museum’s exhibit, Wrigley’s Catalina: A Centennial Celebration, will run through January 2020.
Events listed in this article are not the complete itinerary, but the year is sure to see many other Wrigley-centered celebrations on Catalina. For more information on the experiences in this article, visit the websites visitcatalina.com and catalinamuseum.org.