WIES–Catalina Conservation Divers (WIES–CCD)

35th Annual Avalon Harbor Underwater Cleanup
Saturday, February 20th, 2016

USC’s Catalina Hyperbaric Chamber and Wrigley Institute for Environmental Studies–Catalina Conservation Divers are proud to continue the tradition of the Avalon Harbor Underwater Cleanup. Thanks to the dive community, the 35th Cleanup was a huge success! Cleanup divers removed an astonishing 4,980 pounds of trash from Avalon Harbor! 343 attendees, along with the support of 63 volunteers, banded together to collect everything from beer cans to boat parts – from radios to a Rolex watch. In total, the event raised $20,639 for USC’s Catalina Hyperbaric Chamber and Wrigley Institute Scientific Diving Program.

2016 35th Annual Avalon Harbor Underwater Cleanup on Flickr:
35th Annual Avalon Harbor Underwater Cleanup


Event Stats
  • Trash Removed: 4,980 lbs.
  • Participants: 406 Total (317 Divers, 26 Non-Divers, 63 Volunteers)
  • Funds Raised: $20,639


T-Shirt Design Contest
(c) Emily Phelan, 2016
35th Avalon Harbor Underwater Cleanup design, 2016 winner Emily Phelan

Congratulations to Emily Phelan for the winner of this year's Avalon Harbor Underwater Cleanup t-shirt contest.


Mark your Calendars!

The 36th Avalon Harbor Underwater Cleanup will be Saturday, February 25, 2017.


2016 Awards

Clothing: “Dorky" Fur hat with Paws. Did it keep the diver’s head warm?
Found by Johnny Haire 

Electrical: TV Remote - Not usually found in the harbor waters, wonder if they were upset with the Superbowl?
Found by Eric Mabry

Funniest: Handheld VHF Radio with the label Harbor Patrol along with a number.
Found by unknown donor
Former mayor, Bob Kennedy, will be taking the radio and trash award plaque to the Avalon Harbor Master to hang in city hall as a reminder of harbor budget needs, concerns, requests, etc.

Furniture/Household: With all of the concerns of el Niño rains you definitely want this around, Bug Zapper.
Found by Darryle Abbott

Kitchen Related: This was a fitting find, as the team that found it was married last year and came to their first Underwater Cleanup for their anniversary. They found their champagne brunch underrated - not only the eggs, but also the champagne glass to go with it, (although I have heard of egg in your beer, not egg in your champagne!).
Found by Lynsey and Quentin Scott Boatman

Bizarre: That is the only way we could describe this very unusual find - wonder what they saw in this - a three legged Eyeball (with adjustable legs)!
Found by Sharon Wallin

Miscellaneous: With all the comic heroes around and their toys, someone found a Scuba Action Figure!
Found by Samantha Assad

Smallest: A very tiny human skull bead. Alas, poor Yorick! Wonder where the rest of the skeleton went?
Found by Bill Shermett

Valuable: We’ve had rings and watches (and some have actually found their owners again!). This time a Rolex watch, still ticking! Found by Randy Gabler

Worthless: What can we say about this? In its heyday it was the technological marvel but not anymore, an 8 track tape.
Found by Kerry Long

Beautiful: We had to create a category for this item, as it is the most beautiful thing to come out of the water in a long time. A large square Chinese Teapot with gold accents. Paint colors were still bright and shiny in spite of the marine growth.
Found by Phil Darling

Most Spirited Dive Team: This year’s award goes to a family - with their young son, Corbin, on shore - enthusiastically swimming around all the divers while wearing a shark fin on his back. Who knew that sharks could bring such levity to the day?!
Brian, Corbin (and family) Bray

The Ken Kurtis Silver Tongued Devil BS Award: “I’m Being Framed!” won by Lynne Hagen
The story of finding a doll (girl) swimming in the water to get away after being accused of murder. The props of a female doll and a worm eaten wooden frame complete this picture.

Golden Flipper Award: Given to a person, or group, that has dedicated time and years to working with the Underwater Cleanup. This year goes to Ted Sharshan, who has worked with the Cleanup for 16 years.

The Jon Hardy Award: Given to a person, or group, that is promoting diving safety and/or diving especially in Southern California and Catalina (Love this Island!). This year’s recipient has been diving since 1984 - decades! Diving and bringing divers to the island and has a club, Barnacle Busters, to continue this tradition. This year’s award goes to R. Buck – Keep on Divin’!


2016 Sponsors

A huge thank you to our 2016 sponsors! The Cleanup would happen without their generous support!

Primary Sponsor – total retail value of prizes or cash donation of $750+
Major Sponsor – total retail value of prizes or cash donation of $400-$749
Participant – total retail value of prizes or cash donation of $50-$399
2016 Primary Sponsors
Avalon Blue Line Baggage
Avalon Environmental
Blackbeard's Cruises
Catalina Adventure Tours
Catalina Divers Supply
Catalina Express
Catalina Island Conservancy

Channel Island Dive Adventures
Catalina Scuba Luv
Descanso Beach Ocean Sports
Great Escapes Dive Chaters

Hermosa Hotel
PCH Scuba
Santa Catalina Island Company
Sherwood Scuba

USC Catalina Hyperbaric Chamber

USC Wrigley Institute for Environmental Studies


2016 Major Sponsors
Aquarium of the Pacific


Pelican Products
Pocket Weights

TUSA/Waterproof USA



2016 Participants
• Avalon Harbor Department
• Bigblue Dive Lights
• Bluewater Avalon
• Catalina Cylinders
• Catalina Island Inn
• Dive Dry with Dr. Bill
• Dive Right
• DUI int.
• Ikelite Underwater Systems
• Island Water Charters
• Kraken Sports
• Ocean Management Systems
• Princeton Tec
• Saint Brendan
• Sealife Underwater Camera
• Seaport Village Inn
• Submersible Systems, Inc.
• Vicencia and Buckley



Email wies-ccd@usc.edu or contact the USC Hyperbaric Chamber at (310) 510-4020.