The Catalina Conservancy Celebrates 50 Years

The Catalina Island Conservancy celebrates its golden anniversary with member events and signature activities, including naturalist-led hikes, free Botanic Garden and Native Plant Nursery tours, complimentary Eco Tours, and more.

CATALINA ISLAND— The Catalina Island Conservancy is celebrating 50 years of conservation, education, and recreation this year with a series of events on July 22.

Members are invited to events and signature activities, such as naturalist-led hikes, free Botanic Garden and Native Plant Nursery tours, complimentary Eco Tours, and more. After spending the day exploring the Wildlands, members are invited to get to know the Conservancy’s leadership at the Trailhead Open House with happy hour at Toyon Grill. To become a member and participate in the 50th Anniversary Celebration, visit or contact

“The Conservancy will host events for staff, members and donors throughout the weekend,” said Catalina Island Conservancy Director, Gina Dartt. “With 4,500 members, the bulk of the activities take place on July 23 which is free and open to all members.”

Scheduled member activities for the day of event include:

-Naturalist-led Eco Tour (Two hours) from 9:45-11:45 a.m.

– Garden to Sky Hike from 10 a.m.- 2 p.m.

– White’s Landing Exclosure Tour from 10:30 a.m.- 1 p.m.

– Airport Loop Hike from 11 a.m. – 3 p.m.

– Botanic Garden Tour from 12-3 p.m.

– Naturalist-led Eco Tour from 1-3 p.m.

– Ackernman Native Plant Nursery Tour from 2:30-5:30 p.m.

– Happy Hour Celebration at the Trailhead from 4-7 p.m.

Members of the Wrigley and Offield families established the Catalina Island Conservancy in 1971 as a nonprofit organization dedicated to restoring and protecting Catalina’s wildlands.

It all began with Philip Knight Wrigley’s vision to make Catalina Island a sort of living laboratory, which including creating 42,000 protected acres where native species can thrive, and allow people to enjoy, explore, and celebrate the natural beauty of the Island.

Fifty years later, that concrete intention generated programs designed to protect, restore, and promote the sustainable use of natural resources for present and future generations.

Since 1972, the Conservancy has developed and grown into a preservation program for the Island’s wildlands and wildlife by helping tourists and residents promote learning about Catalina Island and conservation while enjoying Catalina’s natural gifts.

The Conservancy provides access to the Island’s wildlands and 50 miles worth of biking, and roughly 165 miles of hiking opportunities within the Island’s road and trail system. In addition, the Conservancy conducts educational outreach through its Nature Center and Wrigley Memorial & Botanic Garden and offers guided experiences in the Island’s rugged interior.

Throughout the last 50 years, the Conservancy has continued to work to protect the Island’s crucial flora and fauna, including the recovery of bald eagles and endemic Catalina Island foxes through instrumental strides by trapping nearly all the island’s remaining foxes and beginning a captive breeding program to save the subspecies from extinction helping the population grew and them releasing them back into the wild.

The Conservancy works to educate children and adults about the uniqueness of Catalina Island and the importance of nature. It provides essential access to the Island’s environment as well as guided experiences that are designed to generate curiosity and encourage healthy lifestyles that will, in turn, benefit the Island, by teaching how to live in a healthy manner on the Island.

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