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

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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.

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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.

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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.)

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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.

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Checking out the gift shop.
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The Great Ceremonial House Lobby of Disney’s Polynesian Resort, entryway.

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The light fixtures high above the lobby.

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View from the monorail of the Polynesian Village Resort.

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

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Elly & Hawaiian Mickey.
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Caroline having fun with Stitch.

*****

Brunch at Ohana’s at Disney’s Polynesian Resort: Our Restaurant Review

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Ohana’s is on the 2nd floor of Disney’s Polynesian Resort.

We’ve eaten at Ohana’s several times now, but only for brunch.

Ohana, of course, means Family. The food is served family style to your table.

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Lilo and Stitch at Disney’s Polynesian Resort

Brunch is a delicious Hawaiian-themed character breakfast with Mickey, Lilo, and Stitch all wearing their luau costumes and leis.

Reservations are hard to get, especially for breakfast, as it’s very popular.

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Ohana’s signature Pineapple-Coconut Breakfast Bread. So good!

We were on-time for our 10:30am brunch reservation and were immediately seated and given a basket full of yummy, freshly-baked Hawaiian bread.

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Mickey Waffles and Stitch Waffles!

Ohana’s serves the breakfast food family style to the table, in gigantic metal bowls with large spoons to serve yourself onto your individual plates.

We were really excited to get some chilled “moonshine” juice just like they serve at Trail’s End restaurant, but here it’s called P.O.G juice, which stands for pineapple, orange and guava juice.  It is perfection.

Carafes of P.O.G. juice.
Carafe of chilled P.O.G. juice for the table.

We love the Mickey Waffles and order them whenever we can.

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August 2019: Fruity Pebbles Mickey Waffles!  These might not be available all the time.

The day we were there, they not only had Mickey Waffles, they also had Stitch Waffles too!  Super cute!

Food photos!
Food photos!

While we were enjoying our breakfast, Polynesian Mickey, Lilo, and Stitch all came by our table to visit us.

We had a great time with the characters!

I had forgotten how short Stitch is!  Halfway through breakfast, Hawaiian music started playing and all the kids got up and started parading around the restaurant, laughing with the characters.  So fun!

Cost:  $40.47 per person. Tax is included; gratuity is not included. A standard, non-alcoholic beverage is included in this price.  Cast members get a 20% discount.

Note that the price of this meal varies based on the time of year (peak season vs regular season), and also on the day of the week (weekday vs. weekend).

We ate it all!
We ate it all!
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August 2019

“Ohana’s Best Friends Breakfast featuring Lilo and Stitch”

Breakfast Menu, August 2019

Served 7:30am – 12pm, $40.47 (includes tax, but not gratuity)

The ‘All you care to enjoy’ meal is brought table-side by servers. Sweet bread, fruit, breakfast skillet, and Mickey Waffles with warmed syrup are brought to your table as soon as you’re seated.  You may request seconds.

Basket of Sweet Hawaiian Breads

Seasonal Fruit

Hawaiian breakfast platter for the table includes:

Hua Paka (Scrambled Eggs) – made fresh, hot & delicious

Uala Kahiki (Fried Potatoes) – island-style potatoes, with caramelized onions & scallions

Pua’a (Pork) – pork breakfast sausage links & smoked bacon

Mickey and/or Stitch Waffles – with warmed syrup

Beverages:

Unlimited P.O.G. juice – the juice is a blend of pineapple, orange and guava juices

Milk, hot cocoa, bottled water, coffee, and tea
***

Some photos from our brunch:

Enjoying a Character Breakfast at 'Ohana
Enjoying our Character Breakfast at ‘Ohana.
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The food was so delicious!
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Yum!
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Mickey leading a parade of kids around the restaurant.
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Elly with Lilo. (Look at that basket of Hawaiian Bread!)
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Lilo was great!
Ohana Stitch
Having fun with Stitch.
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Elly & Hawaiian Mickey.

“Ohana’s Best Friends Breakfast featuring Lilo and Stitch”

Polynesian friends invite you to join Mickey for autographs and pictures. A family photo is taken before you are seated.

A photographer will bring the photo to your table during the meal for you to purchase if you wish.

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We love the theme-ing of this restaurant.
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It’s actually not a very big restaurant.
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Aloha!
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Throwback Thursday: Christian meeting his favorite character, Stitch. #TBT

************** 

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Cheers to the new year!

We’ve written two books about our time working – and playing – as Disney Cast Members at Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida.

Both are available on Amazon.com in paperback and Kindle:  Two Girls and a Mouse Tale and Adventures in the Animal Kingdom.

Adventure Book Cover
Adventures in the Animal Kingdom
book Two Girls
Two Girls and a Mouse Tale

If you’d like to follow our daily Disney blog, here’s the link: https://collinsrace1.wordpress.com/

Have a magical day!

Two Disney Sisters

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Two Disney Sisters

****

3 replies to “Meeting Disney Legend ‘Auntie’ Kau’i at the Polynesian Resort

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