Wednesday, June 20, 2007


The day after visiting Pearl Harbor and Waikiki Beach we drove to the other side of the island to spend the day at the Polynesian Cultural Center.  The PCC is owned and operated by the Mormon Church.  All the young people who perform and work there are current or past students at Brigham Young Hawaii.  The center was a clean, wonderful family oriented destination.  The PCC displays the various islands that make up Polynesia.  What makes this a truly incredible experience is the performers are from their home islands, sharing their customs of their island. 

The lay-out is each island is set up as an individual village.  You stroll along beautiful, lush tropical plants from one island to the next.  There are shows at each island and then after the show you can talk w/ the performers and they will show you some of the games, traditions and such of their culture.  This is where it is really fun for the kids.  

There was so much to see and do, we weren't able to see all the islands in one day.  From the islands we did visit, I enjoyed Samoa the best.   Next in my favorite list would be Aetearoa (New Zealand).  In New Zealand we learned about their boat, which is an acoustically crafted canoe.  The chief would sit in the front of the canoe, as the warriors sat behind on benches rowing.  When the chief needed to give commands he could bend down and whisper into the canoe.  The warriors would bend down to hear the commands.  The whisper could be heard as though someone were talking right to you.  They were able to communicate this way w/o their enemies knowing a thing.  Very cool.  We also learned that the Aetearoa village is the only village that was fenced.  The tribes were warring tribes compared to the other islands.  The children learned, at very young ages, various warrior tactics through the games they played.  They had three differnet types of games set up for us to enjoy learning.  The kids really enjoyed these games.

There is a canoe pageant in the middle of the day along the lagoon.  The different islands are represented on individual floats.  They perform traditional dances unique to each island.  It was interesting to see the similarities between the islands yet each one still remaining very distinct.

We stayed for the Luau dinner and the Horizons Show.  It made for a long day and night but the show was worth it.  Again, my favorite was the Samoans performance.  It was the last one of the night.  They were the fire dancers.  It made quite an impression on my 4 year old.  Today he was calling us all in for his version of The Fire Show.  He had taped to one of his drum sticks a paper flame which he twirled around, drums set up which he'd play interspersed between his fire dancing.  He even had some sound effects to mimic the volcanoes they had erupted during the show.

We really enjoyed our long, hot day at PCC.  It was definitely worth the money, drive and cranky kids to visit there.

1 comment:

quietcajun said...

I have a sweet photograph of my almost 15 year old at the PCC when she was about 2... nice memory.