KFI AM 640's Corbin Carson reports on COVID-19 impacts on Catalina Island in a 7 part series.
"Catalina Express President Greg Bombard says pre-COVID, the ferry carried around 1 million people a year from Dana Point, San Pedro or Long Beach across 22 miles of ocean to Avalon in about an hour. But after the pandemic struck and stay-at-home orders were issues, the boats that normally seat hundreds of people were kept running for a few dozen essential workers who needed transportation to get to the island."
"KFI's Corbin Carson visited the jewel of Southern California and spoke with Avalon Mayor Anni Marshall, who said COVID-19 turned Avalon into a ghost town and her wedding business of 30-years suffered greatly during the pandemic shutdowns."
"KFI's Corbin Carson and eight other tourists piled into a multi-level jeep and headed out into 165 miles of unpaved exploration. Joy Alisberger, Corbin's guide, says things are beginning to get back to normal on the island.
Unfortunately, Corbin didn't have two hours to hang out for the full tour, so he jumped out to speak with Catalina Island Conservancy COO Tim Kielpinski about what the island is doing as stay-at-home orders are being lifted and health restrictions eased in anticipation for the upcoming summer tourist season."
"When California health officials issued stay-at-home orders last year as the coronavirus pandemic began to take over everyone's lives, small businesses on Catalina Island saw tourism plummet, leaving them with little to no customers to sustain them. While walking through Avalon, KFI's Corbin Carson spoke with one small business owner who was busy at work unloading boxes."
"Last year after the coronavirus pandemic began, residents on Catalina Island found themselves isolated beyond what you'd think living on an island would be. In part five of the Catalina Island Comeback Series, KFI's Corbin Carson examines how being cut off from the mainland was actually helpful for many during the last year."
"Catalina Island is known for many things - its amazing beaches, the unparalleled snorkeling and of course, the bison who call it their home. But after health orders brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic, people also lost out on learning about the island's rich and storied history. Catalina Island Museum Executive Director Julie Perline-Lee says thankfully tourists are returning because COVID had been incredibly destructive to them."
"In part 7 of the Catalina Island COVID-19 Comeback Series, KFI's Corbin Carson looked at the return of the nightlife in Avalon. Local street musician, Marco Blanco, said it was good to finally have people to play for again as tourists return to the island."