Glo's Souven-EARS

Bringing Souveniers to the Office and Classroom

ALL EARS® Subscriber: How about some ideas for when your child just HAS to bring back something for all 25 kids in her class, but you can't afford $80 or $100 for class souvenirs?

Souven-EARS Shopper: Disney sells all sorts of cookies, candies and pretzels that could be shared with a whole class. Prices range from $1 to $25. I found character lollipops that come bundled five to a set for $3.50. For $1.25 per child, you could also buy adorable little tins of candies with beautiful pictures of the various characters printed on them. They are about as big around as a silver dollar, and are available in the main shops in the parks and at some resorts. My only concern would be food allergies -- If you're thinking about bringing back food items for the kids, check with the teacher first.

If candies or other munchies don't sound like what you're looking for, you're very limited. You can, however, buy beautiful pencils for $1 each. You can also buy various sets of ball-point pens, markers, twist-up crayons and colored pencils. Ball-point pen sets are $10 (6 pens); pencil sets contain 8 pencils for $4; colored pencil sets contain 16 pencils for $4. The twist-up crayons are $6 for 10 and marker sets are priced at $5 for 10 markers. All of these items are available at various shops in all the parks and at Downtown Disney. The characters and pictures on the items as well as the selection vary from place to place.

Another thing you could do is buy a gift for the classroom -- a Disney book or video, maybe stickers for the teacher to use when checking papers, a "how to draw the characters" book, or a Disney game for a rainy day activity. You can find all these items at the World of Disney store at Downtown Disney, as well as in some of the parks and resort gift shops. One last option would be to donate a Disney book to your school's library -- maybe a biography of Walt Disney or a book on Imagineering. You could glue a small snapshot of your child in the front of the book and write an inscription under it -- something like, "To commemorate Janie Doe's visit to Walt Disney World, May 2003." Who knows? You might start a trend, one your school media specialist is sure to love.

ALL EARS® Subscriber: What about when you want to bring back a little something for the six or seven people you have lunch with at work?

Souven-EARS Shopper: I'm assuming that you might be willing to spend a little more on these folks, but you gave no hint as to the coworkers' likes and dislikes, occupations or gender.

You could always go food item route, as I mentioned above, buying a couple boxes of different things and letting everyone share. You could also buy mugs for everyone -- they can be found in virtually every gift shop in every park and resort and range in price from $8.50 to about $10. Everyone can use another mug, even if it's as a pencil holder on a desk or at home. Also, if your coworkers work in an office, there are all sorts of cute little note/picture holders, staplers, business card holders, Scotch tape dispensers, pencil holders, clocks and even a Mickey calculator. How about a cell phone case with Mickey, Goofy, Donald or Pooh? These items are available in all the main gift shops in the parks, at World of Disney, and (to a limited degree) in the resort gift shops. Prices start at around $8 and go up to about $25.

There are wide variety of antenna toppers-- the basic black Mickey ball; Minnie ball; red, white and blue Mickey ball; Sorcerer Mickey's hat; glittery pink princess "cone" headdress with veil; Haunted Mansion Mickey ball; Santa Claus hat Mickey ball -- have I forgotten any? Prices range from $3 to $3.50. What about key chains? Disney has key chains with names, with characters, with lights -- you can even find a Star Wars light saber key chain at Tatooine Traders at Disney-MGM Studios. Prices range from $4 to $10.

Do your coworkers like Disney music? What about a park CD? Do they have a favorite character? Maybe a character T-shirt, nightshirt or baseball cap? These items start at $14. How about a visit to Disney's Days of Christmas at Downtown Disney? You could buy each coworker an ornament. Many of the ornaments can be personalized with a name. (Personalization takes a couple of days, so if you decide to do this, place your order early in your vacation, then pick up the ornaments on your way out of town.) Ornaments cost $4 to $12 (some special ones much higher). A more limited selection of ornaments can be found in various gift shops in the parks and resorts, but the big Days of Christmas store has the best selection. Disney pins also make a cute gift for your friends. Ask everyone who their favorite character is before you leave and then find that character on a pin for them. Pins are available everywhere, and prices range from $6.50 to $10.50, with some special pins and sets priced higher.

You'll be amazed at the variety of gifts and souvenirs available throughout Walt Disney World. There's something for everyone's taste and everyone's budget. If you don't see what you're looking for, try the next shop or ask a Cast Member where you might find it.

Have a great trip and have fun shopping!