To learn more about the voices that you hear on the show, click on a name and it will take you straight to their biography. time to get in depth and personal with your MOW personnel.
Kevin S. Estoque attributes his Disney fandom from his parents, specifically his mother. From what he was told, his parents, when they lived in New York City, brought him down to Walt Disney World when he was just one year old and then every year ever since. This was an easy adventure for his parents as there was only one park at the time. Even when they relocated to New Orleans, they annually brought him down to Walt Disney World; however, this time was easier due to their close proximity. For almost every year of his life, Kevin would travel to Walt Disney World whether it was with his parents or as part of a band trip. He was always a fan and would collect all things Disney from park maps and park tickets to brochures procured from the Florida welcome center or the Okahumpka Service Plaza on the Florida Turnpike. Then, one day while he was in high school, his friend, David, bought him a used copy of Steve Birnbaum’s Walt Disney World Guide from his school’s Christmas Bizarre. From this point on, his obsession exploded as he discovered that he could start buying books regarding his favorite subject. With this new resource handed to him and the dawn of the Internet and Disney related newsgroups, Kevin started acquiring as much knowledge as he could.
Kevin entered the world of podcasting in 2005 when he discovered that his fellow bandmates had a podcast of their own, The Big Easy Trickbag. From here, he discovered the world of Disney podcasts and podcasts regarding other topics as well. In reality, Kevin was podcasting before the medium even existed, privately for himself of course. It started with him reading the WDW guidebooks into a tape recorder word for word which eventually grew into him doing a pseudo-news show where he would document his travels with his friends on band trips, again all with a tape recorder. Kevin attributes his leap into podcasting to two individuals, both who happen to be from New Jersey: well-known Disney trivia guru and podcasting veteran Lou Mongello and director and podcaster Kevin Smith. Kevin started listening to Kevin Smith’s show, Smodcast, and he saw how much fun he and his friend, Scott Mosier, were having while recording the show. It was several times on this particular podcast that Kevin Smith would breakdown how easy it was to begin in this medium. Lou Mongello’s positive and constant embodiment of the phrase “keep moving forward” gave Kevin the impetus to pursue this podcasting venture. You see, Kevin has always had a desire to work for the company and be part of something that brings so much joy to people on a daily basis. But, the path never went in the direction he was hoping. This particular avenue, however, became very accessible to him. He discovered that his friend, Danny, also had a Disney obsession and the rest is what you are witnessing before you.
When Kevin is not podcasting, he entertains the masses as a professional musician in the New Orleans metropolitan area. He has played and recorded with several bands, but he is mostly a freelance musician. As a freelancer, he has played numerous events around the New Orleans metropolitan area and the Gulf Coast. He has worked for several Broadway tours that have come through the New Orleans area such as Wicked, Mary Poppins, and Shrek the Musical; for several performing acts on the Gulf Coast such as Johnny Mathis, Jerry Lewis, Frank Sinatra Jr., and Regis Philbin; for several local musical production companies such the New Orleans Center for the Creative Arts and the Jefferson Performing Arts Society; and for the Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra as an extra musician. On a national level, Kevin worked for the Music Box Company on the 1st National Tour of the Phantom of the Opera as a substitute musician until its closure. In addition, he currently teaches in the music department at Southeastern Louisiana University. Kevin was raised a New Orleanian and is a fierce advocate for the area and its culture. LAISSEZ LES BON TEMPS ROULE!
When I was asked to write this bio, I figured no big deal. Couple of short sentences about myself? Piece of cake. After all, isn’t a bio supposed to be a brief summary about why you’re qualified to do whatever it is you do? And, to be honest. I’m a podcast host. I can sum up my qualifications pretty easily. They are as follows:
1) I have a laptop
2) I have free time.
That’s it! If you have those two elements, you too can be a podcast host!!!
So, I was all prepared to type out my quick, little three sentence bio when it happened. I saw what my fellow co-hosts (Kevin and Lee) wrote. If you’re reading this on our website, then you’ve likely already seen their bios and, suffice it to say, there are neurosurgeons who’ve had less to say about themselves. I was screwed. I couldn’t type out my quick, little three sentence bio. All I could think about is how tiny and insignificant it would look next to my colleagues’ bios. I had no choice. I would have to bring the wood.
I guess I’ll start (as my fellow co-hosts did) by talking a bit about my background and how I became the Disney fan/podcaster I am today. From a very early age, I loved to draw. I wish I could tell you that I spent my afternoons drawing Mickey, Minnie, and the rest of the Disney characters. That may actually make for a better story. But, to be honest, as a young boy I could’ve cared less about princesses and cute, little forest creatures. I loved Batman. I started drawing my own Batman comic books (imitating Neal Adams best I could), and creating my own adventures for the Dark Knight. As I got older, I started creating my own superheroes and delighted in crafting the worlds they inhabited. I was convinced that I would one day be a comic book artist.
My family didn’t go to Disney World often. From pictures, I know I went once when I was a baby. The first actual memory I have of the parks is from going when I was about 8 or 9. It’s all a bit foggy, but I can remember the excitement of boarding the Nautilus, the awe of seeing a ghost in my doombuggy, and the anticipation of stepping foot into the boat for Pirates . I was too young to put my finger on it at the time, but l knew Disney World wasn’t anything like Six Flags or Astro World. It was something special. The next time we went was in 1992. As an adolescent, I figured I had probably outgrown Disney. Instead, I discovered that the feelings of excitement and joy I felt as a kid had morphed into both admiration and inspiration. I recognized that I wasn’t in an amusement park. I was in a theme park immersed in several different stories and each attraction was an adventure to be experienced. I hadn’t outgrown Disney World. I had grown to appreciate it as the ultimate in creating and telling stories. It was everything I wanted to do.
With the twenty bucks I was afforded for souvenirs, I bought “Walt Disney World: 20 Magical Years. I knew that, without that book, I wouldn’t remember all the details of this wonderful place. Back in the dark ages (before the internet), the pictures in that book were the only way I could relate to the parks on a daily basis. I read it multiple times. I drew the pictures. And, when I lobbied Anna, my future wife, to take our first Disney trip together, that book was the equivalent of a PowerPoint Presentation. It’s probably the one thing I still own from my adolescence and, if not, it’s definitely the only item I can still put my hands on without heading into the attic for an hour.
Over the years, my appreciation and affection for the Disney parks continued to grow the more I learned and visited. As someone who relished in picking up a pencil to create characters, worlds, and adventures, Disney World represented the Mecca of creativity and imagination. Once a year I made my annual pilgrimage not only to pay homage to the artistry that went into creating this magical place, but also to recharge my own creative batteries as well.
In that time, I’ve worked on quite a few comic book projects with my best friend and frequent collaborator, Eli Ivory. As I grew older, I gravitated more towards caricature, children stories, and comic strips. I guess becoming a husband and father mellowed me out a bit. It also brought a whole new appreciation for the Disney parks as I got to experience it all over again through my daughter’s eyes.
Fortunately, I discovered that I wasn’t the only adult male who harbored a deep appreciation for Disney when Kevin first visited my house and saw my collection of book and memorabilia. That night, as we discussed all things Disney, we bemoaned the fact that many of the Disney podcasts seemed overly cheery, unwaveringly positive, and very light on humor. The Magic Our Way podcast was born out of that discussion just a few short months later. Since then, collaborating with Kevin, Lee, and Eli on a weekly basis has become the creative highlight of my week and interacting with likeminded Disney fans has made it a truly rewarding experience. So, there you have it. Largest bio on site. I win. Harambe!
MOW’S OFFICIAL TRAVEL AGENT
Hello everyone! My name is Lee Lastovica (lost-oh-vee-kuh) No worries, you can call me Lee. I know that will be easier. And because you are dying to know, I am not Italian, or Russian. My great grandparents were from Czechoslovakia. My wife is from Hispanic heritage. So our kids are ….. wait for it…… Czechs Mex. I’m here all week. Be sure and tip your waitress!
So, how does a 42 year old man with three kids become a Disney addict? You did just read that part that said I have three kids, right? Like a lot of people, I was raised watching Disney cartoons and TV specials. But, I didn’t really get bit by the Disney bug until I became an adult. When my oldest children were about to start Kindergarten, my Mom offered to help pay for a trip to Walt Disney World in Florida. She paid for our park tickets and hotel, and we paid for food and souvenirs. At that time my wife was pregnant with my youngest son. So, technically all three kids went on that first trip. From the minute we walked into out resort lobby to check in, I was hooked. The attention to detail was unbelievable- everything was larger than life. But, more than the theming and atmosphere, what really hooked me was the over the top level of customer service given by every single Cast Member that we came in contact with. Coming from a retail background, I was beyond impressed. In any organization you will find people that provide a great experience to the guest, but it is nearly impossible to find it with nearly every single person that you come in contact with. We were treated like royalty.
And as they say “the rest is history”. I have been a loyal customer ever since. The more I traveled, the more involved I became in researching the parks and planning our vacations. I started to learn about Hidden Mickeys, touring plans, rope drop, ADR’s, Imagineering, etc, etc, etc. I quickly found that the planning process became almost as fun as the actual trip. (Almost) Soon, I was getting calls from friends asking my opinion on travel dates, resort choices and restaurant recommendations. Our family would plan get togethers with friends and hash out their travel plans over dinner. We have traveled with two other families, because they were not willing to go unless they were traveling with someone that knew what they were doing.
This brings us to today. I have always been a bit of a planner. And now that I am a full blown Disney addict, with no possible chance of recovery, the next logical step was to do this professionally. And while I do have a certain level of Disney knowledge, I now am learning the job of the Disney Travel Agent. I am taking this love of The Mouse to an entirely different level. My main focus when planning a Disney vacation for someone is for them to have the same experience that I did on my first trip. I really want them to have the vacation of a lifetime. Walt Disney once said “You can design and create, and build the most wonderful place in the world. But it takes people to make the dream a reality.” It is the people that you will encounter on a Disney vacation that make you want to come back time and time again. I now consider myself one of those people, and take that role very seriously.
To book your next vacation with Lee Lastovica:
- You’ve Got A Friend in Lee
- Lee Lastovica, travel agent with Magical Moments Vacations
- (832) 570-5490
Lee donates a portion of his earnings from every booking to his charity of choice, Girl Power 2 Cure.
MR. MARVEL MOMENT
Eli is a native New Orleanian. Ignoring his parents’ advice, he went to the Savannah College of Art and Design after having graduated from high school. There, he graduated with the first Sequential Art degree. Now he uses his comic art acumen to draw his own comics and to teach them as well. He has brought to life such books as Molly Be Damned and Project Geisha. Now, he brings his creative experience and zaniness to Magic Our Way.