Island Donuts and Sailor’s Delight Ice Cream Eye Summer Opening in Avalon

A donut store and ice cream shop are set to open this summer in the heart of Avalon.

AVALON一 The food scene in Avalon is constantly changing and evolving and there will soon be two new dining opportunities for visitors to try this summer. The Catalina Island Company added two new food tenants who have been hard at work to open shop for the busy summer season.
Sarah Garlow-Garcia and John Kellogg have been transforming the building at the prominent corner of Crescent and Clarissa into Island Donuts and are hoping to open in the coming weeks. Island Donuts will serve freshly made donuts, muffins, coffee, and other hot beverages.

Like many, Garlow-Garcia has a deep family connection and love for the island and many memories from visiting growing up.

“We had donuts here [Avalon] every morning, my mom would come down when we were little kids and bring us donuts,” said Garlow-Garcia.

Garlow-Garcia, who has owned restaurants her whole professional life, said there’s no longer a donut shop on the island and saw an opportunity to bring a quick, less expensive breakfast option for visitors.

“Instead of waiting for breakfast, hey the kids are hungry, we need to feed them, let’s get a hot donut and get on our way and have fun,” said Garlow-Garcia.

They will also cater to the early-bird locals on the island, with plans to open between 5:15 and 5:30 a.m. for workers heading out for the day.

The idea for donuts was solidified when Kellogg met Jose Murillo while golfing on the island. Murillo baked donuts at the former donut shop on the island for nearly 30 years and agreed to come on as the baker for Island Donuts.

“John met him and they became good friends and it just kind of fell into our lap and John’s like why don’t we do this,” said Garlow-Garcia.

In addition to traditional donut favorites, they will have an “Island Special,” filled with half a chocolate bar and half a maple bar inspired by a chocolate and maple bar sold at the former donut shop on island.

“That’s John’s baby,” said Garlow-Garcia.

A few blocks down Crescent Avenue, a similar transformation is taking place at the former Big Olaf’s Ice Cream space, which closed shop. Marianne Carson and her parents, Stacy and Hugh Carson, are putting the finishing touches on Sailor’s Delight Ice Cream, which will serve traditional ice cream by the cup or cone, waffle and cookie ice cream sandwiches, and specialty shakes with flavors including peanut butter and jelly, dulce de leche, and s’mores.

Marianne Carson said they wanted to serve ice cream that’s not available everywhere and tried samples from The Chocolate Shoppe Ice Cream Company in Madison, Wisconsin and were blown away.

“We were trying to find something that was a little more unique and basically that people hadn’t heard of,” said Carson.

Carson grew up on the island and watched her parents open two other businesses in Avalon, inspiring her to do the same.

“I just saw it my whole life and I just I think it’s kind of naturally in me,” said Carson.

Carson said they hope to start scooping in mid-July.

Hungry visitors will also be able to enjoy some old favorites, some of which will be offering dinner dinning on the sand. The city extended its beach dinning program and several restaurants are offering beach seating along Crescent Avenue starting at 6 p.m. nightly. The program was started in July 2020 to allow restaurants to operate when county COVID-19 restrictions prevented indoor seating.

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