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Laughing To the Beat: Tongan Drumming

      Laughing to the beat: Tongan drumming   For many years Polynesian Cultural Center visitors from around the world have been enjoying the humorous attempts by audience “volunteers” to play like islanders do during the Tongan Village’s drumming show: There’s just something about watching the first time they try to mimic the antics of a muscular Tongan that cracks everyone up, every time.   “From the beginning years ago, that’s the response we expected. The show has held up very well,” said Semisi Fakatava, PCC’s Tongan cultural ambassador. He has worked...
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Tongan Lashing Expert Brings Skills to P...

    Tongan Lashing Expert  As contractors near completing the PCC’s newly renovated Tongan Village, a cultural expert in lalava or traditional sennit-cord lashing has been brought in to add some culturally distinctive finishing touches.   For the many centuries before Tongans and other Polynesians obtained metal from the outside world, they used miles and miles of sennit — kafa in Tongan, a strong flexible cordage created by braiding coconut-husk fibers together — to lash various parts of their wooden houses, canoes and other items together.   Thicker cords and...
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Community News

    Coming soon: Ukulele Experience! PCC’s new Ukulele Experience and the Ukulele Experience Gallery, which you will find just before the Ticketed Entrance inside the PCC, will be a great place to learn more about this popular instrument that’s practically synonymous with Hawaii around the world.   For example, did you know that Hawaii’s King Kalākaua learned both to play and make ukuleles from some of the same Madeira (Portugal) immigrants who introduced their predecessor-version of the instrument to the islands in 1879.     Learn more about ukuleles at the...
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First Tongan in the NFL Champions Educat...

    Two of the five men honored during the Polynesian Football Hall of Fame enshrinement activities at the Polynesian Cultural Center on January 30, 2016, have close personal ties to Laie. One of them, the first Tongan to play in the NFL, took extra time to explain those ties and share a special message: Education is the goal young athletes should chase.     The first “Laie boy,” the late Al Lolotai Jr., received the PFHOF 2016 Contributor’s award. He was born in Sāmoa, but grew up in the community and in 1945 became the first Polynesian to play in the...
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The Beauty of Polynesia

    What is the real beauty of Polynesia? The media may focus on pictures of beautiful Polynesian woman dressed in hula skirts, with big brown eyes and long, luxurious hair. These quintessential islanders can make men swoon and women long for such genes. But the real beauty of Polynesia comes from the hearts of its people.   Those who have worked at the Polynesian Cultural Center, and the loyal guests who visit us time and again will be happy to list off the people who have touched their lives…..honorable and gracious kapuna who have guided and influenced...