Honolulu Stadium

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Honolulu Stadium
Termite Palace
Honolulu Stadium is located in Hawaii
Honolulu Stadium
Honolulu Stadium
Honolulu
LocationHonolulu, Hawaii, U.S.
Coordinates21°17′35″N 157°49′37″W / 21.293°N 157.827°W / 21.293; -157.827Coordinates: 21°17′35″N 157°49′37″W / 21.293°N 157.827°W / 21.293; -157.827
Capacity25,000
SurfaceNatural grass
Construction
Opened1926, 93 years ago
Closed1975   (September)[1]
Demolished1976
Tenants
University of Hawaii (NCAA)
the Hawaiians (WFL) (197475)
Hawaii Islanders (PCL) (1961–75)

Honolulu Stadium was a stadium located in the Moʻiliʻili district of Honolulu, Hawai'i, at the corner of King and Isenberg Streets, which was the left field corner. Opened in 1926, it was the primary sports venue in Hawaiʻi preceding Aloha Stadium. Famous athletes who competed in Honolulu Stadium include Babe Ruth, Joe DiMaggio, who hit a home run out of the park in 1944, and Jesse Owens.

Irving Berlin performed at Honolulu Stadium in 1945. Elvis Presley performed in 1957 while Billy Graham inspired a capacity crowd a year later. It was the home of the University of Hawaii Rainbows football team, the Hawaiians of the World Football League (WFL) and the Hawaii Islanders of the Pacific Coast League (PCL).

The stadium was also the venue for the Poi Bowl and Pineapple Bowl, and a number of world championship boxing matches. It also served as a venue for stock car racing and high school football. During its final years, the stadium could hold about 25,000 fans; it was demolished in 1976.

Honolulu Stadium, nicknamed the "Termite Palace" because it was made of wood and wooden structures in Hawaii are attacked by termites, was considered outdated by the 1960s and was replaced by Aloha Stadium in September 1975. Home plate was in the northwest corner; the third base line ran along King, and left field seating was bounded on the east by Isenberg. The football field ran parallel to the third base line, but away from the infield; the west end zone was near the first base line and the gridiron ran east-southeast, through right field and center field. The sideline seating for football was in right field and along the third base line.

Field dimensions mentioned in local newspapers varied somewhat, but the consensus appears to be: left field 325 ft (99 m), right field 305 ft (93 m), and center field 430 ft (130 m).

In 1971, the Hawaii Rainbows football team hosted the undefeated and top-ranked Nebraska Cornhuskers at the stadium in early December.[2][3] The defending national champions were fresh off their Game of the Century win on Thanksgiving at #2 Oklahoma, and went on to crush second-ranked Alabama in the Orange Bowl in Miami on New Year's night for a 13–0 season.

Track was also run at the stadium. It was the site of Hawaii's first night track meet in 1949.[4]

In the stadium's last event, the Islanders won their first PCL championship (in six games) over the Salt Lake Gulls on September 8, 1975;[1][5] they successfully defended the title in 1976, with the entire best-of-five series played in Utah.[6]

A public park, Honolulu Stadium State Park, also known as Old Stadium Park, now occupies the location. A plaque at the corner of King and Isenberg commemorates the stadium. Some of the property wall that stood behind the first-base stands on the west end still remains.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Checketts, Brent (September 9, 1975). "Islanders erupt, clinch crown!". Deseret News. (Salt Lake City, Utah). p. C1.
  2. ^ "Hawaii holiday". Spokane Daily Chronicle. (Washington). (AP photo). December 3, 1971. p. 16.
  3. ^ "Orange Bowl tilt remains big one". Spokane Daily Chronicle. (Washington). Associated Press. December 6, 1971. p. 15.
  4. ^ Cisco, Dan. Hawai'i Sports [History, Facts, and Statistics]. Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press. p. 348. ISBN 0824821211. Retrieved April 11, 2019.
  5. ^ "Islanders top Gulls for title". Spokesman-Review. (Spokane, Washington). September 10, 1975. p. 18.
  6. ^ Checketts, Brent (September 13, 1976). "Destiny tabs Hawaii". Deseret News. (Salt Lake City, Utah). p. C1.

External links[edit]