Catalina Island News

Experience the Tuna Club and Support the Catalina Island Museum - One Day Only!

Catalina Island Museum

One day each year the Catalina Island Museum partners with the Tuna Club of Avalon to reveal the rich history and traditions of Catalina Island's most private club to the public. On Saturday, August 1st you have the opportunity to tour the world famous Tuna Club, a nationally registered historic landmark and the oldest fishing club in the United States.

Access to the historic clubhouse founded in 1898 is restricted to club members only, but once a year, when it opens its doors to the public to benefit the Catalina Island Museum. It is the birthplace of sport fishing. Trophies, artifacts and photographs are among many relics exhibited in the club, documenting the history of big-game fishing and the first recorded rod and reel catches of tuna, marlin and broadbill swordfish.

“Thousands of visitors and island residents pass by the clubhouse every day curious to know more about it,” stated the Catalina Island Museum’s Executive Director Dr. Michael De Marsche. “We are excited to be able to offer this exclusive opportunity to our members and the community of Avalon. The preservation of island history is an important link between the museum and the Tuna Club, and we are honored to partner with them.”

The Tuna Club’s greatest legacy stems from its founder, Dr. Charles Frederick Holder.  A pioneer in ocean conservation, Holder instigated the first regulations to govern big game angling.  To this day, its members strictly adhere to the rules as dictated by Holder, and the club remains committed to ethical angling and preserving the sport’s great traditions.  The Tuna Club's illustrious history includes a number of famous anglers, such as British Prime Minister Winston Churchill, movie director Cecil B. DeMille, actors Charlie Chaplin, Bing Crosby and Stan Laurel, writer Zane Grey and United States Presidents Roosevelt and Hoover.

Rock Gosselin and Bart Glass, lifelong fishermen, Avalon residents and Tuna Club members, will conduct the tours this year, sharing the unique history of the club and its role in the birth of sport fishing. The Tuna Club Experience is offered on Saturday, August 1st at 1:00 pm, 2:00 pm, and 3:00 pm. Only 60 tickets are available for this experience.

Don’t miss this unique experience. This event always sells out quickly! Tickets are $30 for members of the museum – a savings of 15% - and general admission tickets are $35. All proceeds directly benefit the day-to-day operations of the Catalina Island Museum. For more information, to purchase tickets, or become a member, the museum may be reached by phone at 310-510-2414 or at its website:

Experience the history. Experience the sportsmanship. Experience the Tuna Club and support the Catalina Island Museum.  The museum, its digital theater and store are located on the ground floor of Avalon’s historic Casino and are open 7 days a week, from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. For more information, the museum may be reached by phone at 310-510-2414 or at its website: