Class of ‘23 at Catalina Island


Elen Grigoryan

Seniors Vanya Arakelian, Mariangel Kourkounian, Nairy Manoukian, Anahit Sukiasyan, Melineh Shahverhdyan, and Elen Grigoryan on the boat ride to Avalon.

Anooshik Tahmasian, Section Editor

Days spent out in nature can be captivating, especially when it is along with friends across the ocean to a beautiful island.  On Saturday April 1st, the seniors of the class of 2023, got on buses at 7:45 am in front of the school to make it to Long Beach for the 10:50 am Catalina Express. 

The early morning cold breeze and the gentle sea waves splashing on the boat made the experience surreal. Students were dispersed around the three decks of the boat, inside they were having snacks, socializing, and playing cards or outside enjoying the view of the sea and the cool air. Fortunately, all the seniors were feeling well enough and didn’t become seasick. Students arrived at Avalon around 11:30 am and took a group photo before being released to explore and navigate wherever they wanted. 

Along the main road next to the seashore were various stores and restaurants. The stores sold souvenirs such as clothing, decorations, keychains and more. The restaurants served fast food, seafood, drinks, and appetizers. Some stores sold equipment for fishing and other water activities. 

For those looking to spend more time in the water, activities such as swimming, parasailing, kayaking, and paddleboarding were available. Senior Tigran Arakelyan decided to go kayaking, persuading his friends to join him. “Despite our initial fear of getting drenched, we did it anyway because the excitement was irresistible,” he said. “We were caught off guard by the sudden rush of water that soaked us, but we shrugged it off and headed our way.” Sharing this adventure with friends made it more memorable. 

Others chose to explore the island staying dry, walking or riding bikes along the seashore. There was also a mini golf park and basketball and volleyball courts. Senior Mariangel Kourkounian rented bikes with her friends and played volleyball. “As we biked, it was really fun to see new places and the pretty views around the island,” she said. “We thought it would be fun to spend the last hour playing boys vs girls volleyball,” she added. 

At the end of the day, around 7 pm, students gathered at the entrance for roll call. By 8 pm, everyone was seated on the Catalina Express ready to head back to Long Beach. Students were tired and restless;  many chose to lay back, sleep, listen to music, or play card games. Dr. Landisi spent time with the seniors during the boat rides, playing alongside with them or going around making sure they were comfortable.

Seniors were able to create new memories and cherish more moments with each other, as graduation is fast approaching. Thank you to Ms. Armineh and Ani Mikealian for another senior class trip, and to the three other chaperones, Dr. Landisi, Ms. Mardirosian, and Mr. Ghavam for a successful and safe trip for the class of 2023 at Catalina Island.