Kids in Kauai County may soon be able to get out of the house and back on the field. Mayor Derek Kawakami has requested permission from Governor David Ige to allow for outdoor organized sports to be held starting Monday.
“You know it’s rough on the kids, they’re getting restless at home not being out so it’s just difficult,” Former Little League World Series champion head coach Gerald Oda said of kids not being able to play sports this spring.
Oda and many other coaches had to stop their teams from competing in March due to COVID-19.
The Little League World Series was also cancelled, ending Hawaii’s 12-year-olds the chance to play in the widely popular and internationally televised event in Williamsport, Pennsylvania. Hawaii teams have won three world titles since 2005, and finished in 4th place last year.
“It’s sad that these 11 and 12-year-olds that participate, they had their one chance to participate in that kind of tournament and it’s taken away from them. No fault out of them,” Oda added.
While Kauai County awaits approval from Ige, KHON2 News inquired about the status of Honolulu County from Mayor Kirk Caldwell, who did not respond to a request for comment.
Hawaii County Mayor Harry Kim’s spokesperson said: “Not yet. Contact sports await a Governor’s Proclamation.”
On Maui, Mayor Mike Victorino has expressed interest in allowing low-contact sports.
“Whether it’s softball or baseball what I would consider highly competitive but not real contact sports when you compared to say something like soccer maybe, or football where you’re constantly banging into each other, even basketball.”
It is an issue Mayor Victorino says he is getting a lot of comments about.
“We are working on that right now. Some of the other counties and I are talking about how we will reopen but again if you understand that when the NBA and the NFL and the Major League Baseball, the NHL have not reopened their seasons, and they’re professionals.”