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DIVE DRY WITH DR. BILL #802: 2019 AVALON HARBOR CLEANUP

Discussion in 'California' started by drbill, Mar 3, 2019.

  1. drbill

    drbill The Lorax for the Kelp Forest Scuba Legend

    # of Dives: 2,500 - 4,999
    Location: Santa Catalina Island, CA
    22,362
    5,192
    113
    DIVE DRY WITH DR. BILL #802: 2019 AVALON HARBOR CLEANUP

    Last weekend the 38th annual Avalon Harbor Clean-Up was held. I was told that 536 SCUBA divers registered for the event and 427 actually dove. Many dive shops and dive clubs brought groups over to Avalon to help clear trash from the harbor bottom. Signature SCUBA alone brought a record 52 divers over for the event.

    Many of us expected large volumes of trash and some pretty unusual stuff due to the heavy rains and mudslides of the past few weeks. However, conditions were a bit iffy to say the least. Visibility in the bay was only good enough for a Braille dive. Resuspended mud limited it to less than 10 feet in many areas and several divers told me they couldn't even see the bottom. Buddies were separated when you couldn't see past 10 feet. The silt also covered much of the trash on the bottom making it difficult to even find it.

    Fortunately topside conditions were much nicer. For the first time in 40 days and 40 nights a bright yellow sphere appeared in the blue sky. Temperatures climbed to a toasty 63° F after being in the low 40° range previous mornings. The only snow we saw was on the San Gabriel Mountains across the Channel. Once out of the water spirits rose and the majority of the divers enjoyed the awards presentation and the raffle.

    T.J. Jones, the event's usual emcee, was home sick so there were no monkeys (or even lemurs). However, former mayor and co-owner of SCUBA Luv, Bob Kennedy, did a good job in his place. Karl Huggins was there to talk about how the event benefits our island recompression chamber and Ken Kurtis announced the upcoming Chamber Day and Night which are major fund raising events for a facility I hope to never need, but am very glad it is nearby!

    Tom Turney and Jill Boivin were the tireless organizers as they have been for nearly 20 years. The many volunteers that aided were an important part of making this event a success. Some served as dive masters, others in safety kayaks, still more with registration and overseeing and sorting the trash that was brought up. I thank each and every one of you for contributing.

    Many bags of donated goodies were raffled off to divers and other attendees. This event is fortunate in gaining support from many dive and island based organizations. There are also awards for trash items ranging including most interesting piece of clothing, oldest item, most valuable item, etc. And of course there is the Jon Hardy Award for a diver who contributes significantly to diving safety, and the Golden Flipper "lifetime achievement" award (which I received in 2018). Ken Kurtis oversaw the Silver Tongued Devil award which goes to the best story about trash that was picked up during the dive.

    Due to my cancer, I tire more easily these days. No more seven dive days for this old geezer. I only did seven all last year. Fortunately Tom let me sit in the event's golf cart right up near the stage. It limited my ability to catch any of the "free stuff" being tossed out into the audience from the stage. However, I had already snagged a Catalina Divers Supply wife beater which was about two sizes too big for me!

    It is always fun for me to run into so many dive friends on a single day. Much of the time was spent with members of the Sharky's Dive Team from San Dimas. Shop owner Craig Yeaton even got me up on stage to sing at karaoke (and I can't even remember what song we chose). To add frosting to the cake, I was asked to slow dance with a lady-go-diver both nights. She shall remain nameless to protect her reputation.

    I had been invited to the pot luck dinner for the folks who had worked the event. I went home to do a few things before the dinner. Unfortunately, I fell asleep sitting on my couch with my tablet on my lap. I didn't wake up until dinner was over. Sadly, for the 20th year in a row, no one found the bifocals I lost while at Catalina Divers Supply on the Pleasure Pier. Of course my prescription has changed since then anyway.

    © 2019 Dr. Bill Bushing. For the entire archived set of over 800 "Dive Dry" columns, visit my website Star Thrower Educational Multimedia (S.T.E.M.) Home Page

    Image caption: Dive groups from Signature SCUBA and Sharky's; divers entering and in Bay; Abe Rolick with amusing trash and misc trash on tarp; emcee Bob Kennedy and event organizer Jill Boivin; Golden Flipper "lifetime achievement" award and the Silver Tongued Devil competition.

    DDDB 802 harbor cleanup 2019 sm.jpg
     
  2. drbill

    drbill The Lorax for the Kelp Forest Scuba Legend

    # of Dives: 2,500 - 4,999
    Location: Santa Catalina Island, CA
    22,362
    5,192
    113
    The image above was downsized by the site so here are actual sized versions:

    DDDB 802 harbor cleanup 2019a sm.jpg


    DDDB 802 harbor cleanup 2019b sm.jpg

    DDDB 802 harbor cleanup 2019c sm.jpg
     
    АлександрД likes this.

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