Know what kids love? Collecting. That’s right – collecting. It doesn’t matter if it’s bottlecaps, bracelets, go-gos, lego minifigures, magic markers, or video games. They LOVE to collect. Disney knows this – oh yes, they do. So, lucky for you…Disney knows kids so well that they have come up with the coolest, most interactive, imaginative collecting ever.
In this week’s blog – let’s start with pins. Have you seen everyone walking around the parks with those lanyard things around their necks? Yes, they hold your Key to the World, but they also serve a much bigger, magnificent purpose – to hold the PINS! There are whole kiosks and stores at each park devoted to these little gems, but let’s not get ahead of ourselves.
Before you leave home: Scour the internet, ebay, and Disney online for authentic Disney pins. It doesn’t matter what they look like, your kids won’t have them for long. DO NOT spend a lot of money on these pins. Look for pins sold in a Lot on ebay, just make sure that they are authentic, you don’t want to be trading counterfeit pins. The idea is to get ones that you don’t care about so that you can go on a treasure hunt for the ones that you DO want. It’s no fun to just walk around a park with pins you love…you want the HUNT! It’s all about stalking the pins and finding the wonderfully, elusive, favorite one!
Like I mentioned, the fun part about pins for the kids is the trading. Yes, they trade them away. Not forever, they get one in return! Find a cast member in the park that is wearing a GREEN lanyard. These are the employees that are allowed to only trade with kids (see, I told you, Disney has thought of everything – no stranger danger here!) – your kids will approach this person and ask: “May I please see your pins?” This is a great opportunity for those shy, aloof kids to practice their budding social skills and manners. The cast member will let you have a look at their loot, and then will trade with you two times. Here is some history behind the phenomenon.
*Secret tip* – Some shops actually have BOOKS of pins for you to look through, and if you go to Guest Services you will find a PIN STROLLER that is loaded with pins for you to peruse. Kids love to feel like they are in the know. The pin strollers are not normally on display, you have to ask for them. This makes kids feel like they have a secret and are in a very private club! How cool is the parent that knows all of this ahead of time, hands out the pins as a surprise, and helps them in the hunt? The coolest parents ever. A word of caution – my kids forgot to go on the rides, they loved this so much.
Next time, let’s talk about pressed pennies! Never heard of this? I hadn’t either until we found a secret map – more to come!
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