Meeting Disney Legend ‘Auntie’ Kau’i at the Polynesian Resort

DSC00213

Hanging with Walt Disney Living Legend, ‘Auntie’ Kau’i Brandt.  She’s 84 years old!

Although not as well-known as Disney Legend Richard over at the Grand Floridian, Disney’s Polynesian Resort also has a Walt Disney Living Legend working there:  cast member Kau’i Brandt, better known as Auntie Kau’i to the guests.

At age 84, Auntie Kau’i has been with Disney’s Polynesian Resort almost since it opened.

She moved from the Hawaiian island of Oahu in 1971 to first open the Polynesian show at Disneyland in California, and then moved to Florida to open a similar show at Walt Disney World. She was the master of ceremonies for both shows, and now serves as a cultural representative at the Polynesian Resort.

DSC00214

Her lei-making table with beautiful finished leis for sale.

Guests can find Auntie Kau’i in the first-floor lobby of the Great Ceremonial House of the Polynesian five days a week making leis with fresh flowers and pretty ribbons at her table in the corner of the children’s area. She is quick with a friendly smile and delights in showing guests how leis are made.

DSC00215

All the leis smelled so beautiful.  This is a carnation lei with rose colored ribbons (next to it is a candy lei for kids!).

She creates her leis from real flowers for guests celebrating their honeymoon, anniversaries, or family celebrations. (All resort guests receive a pretty, free silk flower lei when they check-in, and also get one when entering the Spirit of Aloha show.)

poly5 (2)

Wearing our leis.

These special leis can be custom-ordered in specific colors and flowers in the adjacent gift shop for $10 – $20 apiece. Auntie Kau’i said she creates about 20 lei necklaces, bracelets, and headbands for guests each day.  How cute would that be if you were getting married at the Polynesian and everyone wore one of these?!

Children are invited to make lei necklaces and bracelets out of pasta and candy. Modern tradition holds that carnation lei symbolize love, but a fresh flower lei is a beautiful gift that needs no reason to give and enjoy.

Auntie Kau’i also teaches guests how to dance the hula. The lessons are complimentary and last about 15 minutes. Women and girls are invited to don grass skirts and are given instruments to play to accompany the ukulele music. During the lessons, Auntie Kau’i and another cast member take turns demonstrating the graceful movements while the guests mimic them. Then, the guests put it all together for their finale. So much fun!

Auntie Kau’i has been dancing the hula since she was 6 years old. On Saturday mornings, she also teaches free dance lessons for two hours at the Polynesian Resort.

Stop by and say hi to her!

You can read more about her interesting life’s story here:  Growing Up Hawaiian.

DSC00212

Checking out the gift shop.

poly lobby (2)

The Great Ceremonial House Lobby of Disney’s Polynesian Resort, entryway.

poly-lights

The light fixtures high above the lobby.

DSC00208

View from the monorail of the Polynesian Village Resort.

Don’t forget to try the delicious breakfast at Ohana’s!!!!

poly14 (2)

Elly & Hawaiian Mickey.

poly12 (2)

Caroline having fun with Stitch.

*******************************

two-disney-sisters

Two Disney sisters.

Two Girls and a Mouse Tale

   by Elly Collins & Caroline Collins

Ever wonder what it’s like to work for Disney???

We worked at WDW for a year in the Disney College Program and have written a book about what it’s like to be a cast member working for Disney.

We’ve included advice on how to successfully get into the DCP program, including some of the actual phone interview questions, how to have a successful internship, and how not self-term before your program ends. Our book is filled with lots of behind-the-scene stories of the magic of Disney. Available now at Amazon.com in paperback and Kindle formats. Published by Theme Park Press.

Book link on Amazon.com:  Two Girls and a Mouse Tale

book

Two Girls and a Mouse Tale

***   

Sprinkles is Open at Disney Springs

sprinkles0

Sprinkles at Disney Springs

The new cupcake shop – Sprinkles – opened up at Disney Springs Town Center a few weeks ago, and the crowds went wild!

sprinkles00

The Sprinkles cupcake ATM.

You don’t even have to go into the shop.  There’s a cupcake ATM right outside!  The cupcake ATM, which is open even when the bakery is closed, can hold up to 400 cupcakes.  It’s constantly restocked throughout the day to ensure freshness. Note:  The cupcake ATM  also carries dog-friendly cupcakes!

sprinkles2

How to chose just one???

Cupcakes are $4.95 each or $52 for a dozen.

They also carry ice cream, cookies, sodas, juices, and coffee drinks.

sprinkles6

And they carry mini cupcakes too!  $3.50 each

You can sign up here for perks like getting your first cupcake for free and getting a free cupcake on your birthday:  Sprinkles Perks.

Disney cast members get a 10% discount.

sprinkles9

Sprinkles menu, June 2016

Sprinkles Disney Springs

1676 East Buena Vista Drive
Lake Buena Vista, Florida 32830

(407) 560-9192

Store Hours:  Monday – Sunday, 10am – 12am

Click here on Sprinkles Cupcakes for our daily Disney menu!

sprinkles

Yes, please!

sprinkles5.jpg

Now open!!!  Stop on by!!

sprinkles8

Sprinkles Cupcakes!

September 2016 Update!

Breaking News!!  A new Sprinkles Cupcakes location is planned at Downtown Disney Anaheim in California, right next to Disneyland!  The shop will be next door to the first Starbucks in Downtown Disney, in a portion of the space recently vacated by Quiksilver.

***************************************

working together at DAK

Working together at DAK.

Two Girls and a Mouse Tale

   by Elly Collins & Caroline Collins

Ever wonder what it’s like to work for Disney???

We worked at WDW for a year in the Disney College Program (Fall 2013/Spring 2014) and have written a book about what it’s like to be a cast member working for Disney.

We’ve included advice on how to successfully get into the DCP program, including some of the actual phone interview questions, how to have a successful internship, and how not self-term before your program ends. Our book is filled with lots of behind-the-scene stories of the magic of Disney. Available now at Amazon.com in paperback and Kindle formats. Published by Theme Park Press.

Book link on Amazon.com:  Two Girls and a Mouse Tale

***

Disney Springs Cast Member Discounts!

springs

Welcome to Disney Springs!!!

Major construction continues at a fast pace from one end of Disney Springs to the other, and on all the roadways in-between!  More than 30 new tenants will be moving in this summer.  When it’s complete, it will include more than 150 shopping, dining and entertainment experiences.

Disney Springs Town Center opened May 15, 2016 and it’s lovely.

disney-springs_Full_27688

Big shopping crowds on May 15, 2016

But, wait, what are the Cast Member discounts you ask??

Well, here they are:

ds2

Town Center discounts:  10%-20%

ds3

The Landing discounts

ds4

West Side discounts.

sprinkles

The very popular Sprinkles offers Cast Members a 10% discount on their cupcakes!  Yum!

IMG_20160606_0001

So many places to eat and shop now!!!

More drawings of the new Disney Springs shopping and dining complex:

Disney Springs Town Center (opening in 2016).

Disney Springs Town Center.

Marketplace, West Side

Marketplace, West Side

The Landing (formerly Pleasure Island).

The Landing (formerly Pleasure Island).

Disney Springs 2016

Ariel view:  The Landing at Disney Springs at night.

Disney Springs after dark.

Disney Springs after dark.

Disney Springs logo

Official Disney Springs logo

 

Want more discount info?

2016 Dining Discounts at WDW for Cast Members

Perks of Being a Disney Cast Member

***************************************

working together at DAK

Working together at DAK.

Two Girls and a Mouse Tale

            by Elly Collins & Caroline Collins

Ever wonder what it’s like to work for Disney???

We worked at WDW for a year in the Disney College Program (Fall 2013/Spring 2014) and have written a book about what it’s like to be a cast member working for Disney.

We’ve included advice on how to successfully get into the DCP program, including some of the actual phone interview questions, how to have a successful internship, and how not self-term before your program ends. Our book is filled with lots of behind-the-scene stories of the magic of Disney.

http://www.amazon.com/Girls-Mouse-Tale-Elly-Collins/dp/1941500110/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1430687055&sr=1-1&keywords=two+girls+and+a+mouse+tale

Available now at Amazon.com in paperback and Kindle formats. Published by Theme Park Press.

***