Good news for prep sports: Mayor Rick Blangiardi announces Oahu’s move to Tier 3

Honolulu Mayor Rick Blangiardi has announced a move from Tier 2 to Tier 3, effective Thursday, which could have a significant impact on high school and youth organized sports on Oahu.

His live press conference on Facebook Live referred to sports several times.


“Today, I want to announce effective Thursday morning, 12:01 a.m., we officially move to Tier 3, and with that comes a relaxation of the rules. We got there ahead of schedule thanks to all of you.

“One of the things not included is sports. Because of the circumstances which are most favorable, we’re going to the governor (David Ige) and ask for modifications to Tier 3 so people can play youth sports outside and all team sports. As an old coach, it’s the mental aspect of practices and the peer aspect of team sports. We’re very hopeful that our presentation will be well received by the DOH. I was told by the Lt. Gov., Green, we are eighth best in percentage of vaccinations. Given the supply challenges we’ve had, that’s remarkable. Everyone owns a part of this success.

“We can’t move forward (on Tier 4) until Mar. 25. We have a very low rate of spread and infection, also we’re not burdening our hospitals. Hopefully, we’ll be at Tier 4 in a month’s time.

“I’ve talked to the governor about Tier 3. We started our conversations this past weekend. Nobody wanted to bachi it, so we waited until today. The modifications, we’ve not presented in detail. I think because I’ve been public about sports that he’s anticipating hearing from us. We can only move one tier at a time forward. I need the governor’s sign-off. He has the ultimate authority in this. We will be submitting our request to the DOH, which will make a review and then submit to the governor their recommendations. We submitted our papers to the governor’s desk yesterday and they will go in effect Thursday morning.

“Our biggest safety concern is that we don’t have spectators on the sidelines. Wait in the car for them. The biggest deterrent is gathering of crowds and that’s the one thing we don’t want to happen. Allowing people to play, hopefully, that’s the biggest one.

“It’s a time to be joyous, to celebrate our success and sacrifice, and to keep moving forward.”

Currently, the state’s five high school leagues plan to play spring sports, pending approval.


  1. Just Another Local Mom February 23, 2021 5:50 pm

    I just want to thank the Star-Advertiser for keeping us informed about COVID and youth sports! This has been my go-to resource for many months, and — as a mom of a local senior who still hopes to play a season — I am just so grateful for the information and the insights.

  2. Inquiring February 23, 2021 6:17 pm

    Can you share with us the 5 high school league’s that plan to play spring sports. (Is football being considered) Just inquiring.

  3. Rob February 23, 2021 8:49 pm

    With all the extra test kits available and all the proven success in 35 other states and with such low numbers of positive cases as immunized Kapuna grow by the day our kids and seniors need to finish their high school careers on top.
    They have patiently waited 12 months to play sports and the situation could not be more favorable. Our governor must support mayor B!
    Simply “LET THEM PLAY”

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