Guide for Visitors to the Wrigley Marine Science Center

The Wrigley Marine Science Center is an active research and educational facility. It's the home and workplace for staff and faculty who are fulltime residents, for faculty and students who have taken residence for limited periods, and for visitors who stay just a day or two. We want to be sure everyone has a safe and productive stay, and we offer the following information and guidelines to help you.

Food Service in the Cafeteria

Breakfast is served from 7:30 - 8:00 a.m.
Lunch is served from 12:00 - 12:30 p.m.
Dinner is served from 6:00 - 6:30 p.m.

Sack lunches are available upon request.


The lounge is open all day.

House Rules

Smoking is not permitted inside any building, including housing, at the Wrigley Marine Science Center. The only place smoking is allowed on the premises is within five feet of ashtrays at clearly designated outdoor smoking areas. All cigarette butts must be deposited in the ashtrays. (No other trash should be placed in them.) In addition, smoking is prohibited in all university vehicles. Anyone who refuses to comply with this smoking policy will be asked to leave the facility. If you do smoke, remember that fire is a very real hazard anywhere on the grounds of the lab complex and the rest of Catalina Island.

Quiet time in the dorms and apartments begins at 10 p.m.


Due to a critical water shortage on Catalina, laundry facilities are not available to guests staying at the lab for less than a week.
A coin-operated laundry is in the room to the left of the cafeteria door. The washers and dryer take quarters, and you can get change for one- and five-dollar bills from a change machine in the laundry room. The cost is $1 to wash and 50 cents to dry, and detergent is available from a vending machine for 50 cents per load.


Check-in time is 2 p.m. and checkout time is 10 a.m. During your stay, please do not remove you towels, linens, blankets and other furnishings in the rooms. When you check out, please fold the blankets and bedspread and leave them on the beds, and please put your sheets and towels in a pillowcase and take them to the laundry room.

If you have been in the water, please leave your diving gear, booties and other gear outside to dry if you intend to bring them back to your room.


The main office for the Wrigley Marine Science Center is in the trailer across the driveway from the lab building. The office phone number is (310) 510-0811. If you need to buy stamps, send mail, using a photocopier or send a fax, please stop in.

Business hours from October to May are 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday.

Business hours from June through September are 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Saturday.


The library is open all hours and is open to visitors. However, teachers and students use it for classes on a regular basis so you might find that it 's closed at certain times. If you do use the library, please leave all materials there when you are finished.

Water Front

The waterfront has a fully functional helicopter pad. If warning lights on the nearby hanger are rotating, it's a sign that a helicopter is approaching to land. In that case, stay behind the red and white stripes on the helicopter pad. Do not move across the pad unless the helicopter rotors are at a complete stop and the crew gives permission to do so. As a practical matter, do not leave any of your gear, wet or dry, in a place where the wind from the helicopter rotors will blow it away.

If you want to swim or go snorkeling in the cove, please check the guidelines that are in the main office.

Please do not enter the hanger or trailers on the waterfront, and please do not touch the scuba gear and skiffs: they are exclusively for research groups.

Lab Building

The third floor of the laboratory is reserved for use by researchers and their students, and it's closed to the public unless an escort has been arranged with a staff member.

Gift Shop

T-shirts, postcards and maps are available at the gift shop. Make arrangements with the staff for purchase.

Marine Life Refuge

Big Fisherman's Cove is a protected refuge -this is a no-take, no-fishing and no-anchor zone. Please do not disturb research projects or remove anything from these waters.


If you are hiking around the Wrigley Marine Science Center, please walk carefully because the rocks can be slippery at times. Stay on the roads and use a flashlight at night. Stay out of fenced areas and away from the sewage treatment pond and building. Please do not pick flowers and plants, or take rocks and shells. Collecting permits are required.


Much of Catalina Island is wild, and some of the island's wild animals appear from time to time at the Wrigley Marine Science Center. The most noticeable members of this "wild kingdom" are the bison, descendants of animals that were brought to the island in 1924 for a movie. The bison occasionally wander across the lab property, and if you see one, the best advice is very simple - stay away and give these big animals as much space as possible. The bison on Catalina Island are not domesticated so don't try to approach them or pet them. The same advice applies to any scorpions or rattlesnakes that you see or hear. Encounters with these creatures are very rare but they do happen. Encounters with ticks are more common, so if you have been walking in grassy areas, check for ticks later.

First Aid Kits

First aid kits are located in the kitchen, office and the lab. First aid kits are also located at the waterfront and in the lab vehicles. Automated external defibrillators (AEDs) are located in the cafeteria, lab building and diving locker.

Emergency Numbers

Paramedics: 911 or (310) 510-0341

Two Harbors Sheriff: (310) 510-0872