Monday we went to the Polynesian Cultural Center (PCC), the single thing that I had been most excited about doing during our visit to Hawaii since I found out we were going last December.
Neither Adam and I had any idea how vast the PCC was. Upon entering, we were provided with a map of the center. Adam's response: "It's like Mormon Disneyland!" I knew that there were villages representing each of the major Pacific Islands, but I just didn't expect it to be so huge! The first village we entered was Samoa, where we were greeted by this guy:
Each of the villages also had shows and demonstrations that they did throughout the day, too. In Samoa, we learned how to make fire, how to husk and crack a coconut, and how to extract the coconut meat and milk.
|This guy was hilarious! His demonstration was SO entertaining!|
After cracking a coconut in two, our Samoan friend called Adam up on stage to drink the coconut water with him.
Ty got a try of it, too!
We then watched another Samoan man shimmy up a coconut tree!
After we were done at the Samoan Village, we watched a canoe pageant where each of the islands was again represented through dance.
We got to try coconut bread in the Tahitian Village, and we got the recipe to take home. I will be trying it out soon!
We spent the better part of the rest of the day in the Fiji Village, where they had lots of fun activities for kids.
Here's a little clip of the boys learning a dance from Fiji. Ty was totally inhibited, but McKay did his best to channel his inner islander! :)
After a whole day of checking out the villages, we were treated to a Hawaii Luau feast! We gorged ourselves on Kalua pig, pineapple, fish, taro bread (it was purple, which was a little trippy, but SO good!), and all sorts of other Hawaiian delicacies. Yumm-o!
Then after dinner, we were privileged to watch the night show, Ha: The Breath of Life. It was incredibly well done. We had second row seats so we got an up-close view of the awesome performance. McKay zonked after a long day with no nap, but even he couldn't sleep through the incredible fire dance at the end of the show. It was brilliant!
|Our family post-performance with the show's main character|
We loved our day at the PCC. There were a couple of things that surprised me, though. First, as I mentioned, was how huge it was. Second, though the PCC is owned by the Church, I never saw the Church's logo there or heard the name of the Church mentioned even once. Yes, it was stated several times how the majority of the performers and workers there were students at BYU-H, and this was supporting their education, so I guess you could make the connection if you knew to. I was just surprised that the Church's name wasn't more prevalent there.
This was a definite highlight of the trip for us. So glad we were able to visit the PCC.