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Stan Sheriff Center

Honolulu, HI

Home of the Hawaii Rainbow Warriors



Stan Sheriff Center (map it)
1355 Lower Campus Rd
Honolulu, HI 96822

Hawaii Rainbow Warriors website

Stan Sheriff Center website

Year Opened: 1994

Capacity: 10,300

There are no tickets available at this time.


Local Information


The Best (and Only) Show in Town

One of the main selling points for potential University of Hawaii athletes is the fact that there are no professional teams in the state and that UH sports are the islands' version of a pro team.

Exhibit A is the Stan Sheriff Center, home to the school's basketball and volleyball teams. Fans who want to watch a high-caliber men's basketball game in Hawaii know exactly where to go.

Initially named the Special Events Arena upon its opening, the arena was renamed in 1998 after former athletic director Stan Sheriff, who passed away in 1993. The arena is managed by his son, Rich, who takes great pride in maintaining the arena. And it shows.


What is FANFARE?

The FANFARE scale is our metric device for rating each stadium experience. It covers the following:

  • Food & Beverage
  • Atmosphere
  • Neighborhood
  • Fans
  • Access
  • Return on Investment
  • Extras

Each area is rated from 0 to 5 stars with 5 being the best. The overall composite score is the "FANFARE Score".

Food & Beverage    3

There are 11 different vendors to choose from in the arena that seem to get their orders out in a friendly and expeditious manner.

A lot of the foods are not very unique to Hawaii and are on the pricy side, but the bumbucha nachos are a must try.

Dippin' Dots, Starbucks, Gordon Biersch are among the vendors. Sheriff says that the most popular items are the bumbucha nachos and garlic fries from Gordon Biersch.

The major soda brand at the SSC is Pepsi, and there are a wide range of Pepsi products to choose from. There's also a beer stand with five different beers and two wines to choose from, as well as O'Douls non-alcoholic beers and Budweiser Lime-A-Ritas (strawberry, lime, mango and raspberry).

Of course, fruit punch is one of the fan favorites and suitable for all ages.

Atmosphere    4

Regardless of team success, you can count on fans in Hawaii to always be loud and engaged.

There is no bad seat in the Stan Sheriff Center. Unlike other venues, no seat obstructs your view of the game. Each seat is comfortable with cupholders on each side. At the same time, the atmosphere brings an intimate feeling, but one that's never quiet. The arena boasts a state-of-the-art scoreboard that was built in 2011 and has an LED scoreboard.

The University of Hawaii band is present at each home game, playing songs that range from the school's fight song to the Hawaii 5-0 theme song. Fans are engaged throughout, with fun and quirky activities such as promotional dance contests for cool prizes such as a night at a Waikiki hotel and free haircuts.

Since there is not a bad seat in the house, the best way to get a bang for your buck is to sit in the upper section. Tickets there normally range from $5 to $20.

Neighborhood    5

What more can you ask for? It's Hawaii, and there are many things to do. It's right on campus in Manoa, which is safe and accessible.

Side Street Inn is about a mile and a half away and provides a nice mix of local and national favorites. Even Barack Obama dined there during a visit to his home state.

There are other options within walking distance of campus, and these foods range from Chinese to Greek.

Waikiki is just a few miles away. Although it is the area least like the rest of Oahu, it is still a fun time in and of itself. Whether it be a stroll on the beach or just shopping one of the many stores on the strip, time goes by quickly.

There are many hotels in Waikiki, which is just a few miles away from campus. Although there are a bevy of options, the Hale Koa is tailored towards military members and price their rooms comparatively well.

Fans    4

Hawaii fans are loud, passionate, and knowledgeable about the games they cover. Most importantly, they're honest. Unfortunately, that might mean more groans for some teams.

Attendance normally correlates with team performance. During the 2016 dream season in which the 'Bows went 28-6 with their first ever NCAA tournament win, there were two sellouts. In 2017, besides the North Carolina game on Nov. 18, numbers have been relatively low with attendance numbers in the 3,000-4,000 range.

Simply put, Hawaii fans are loud. Pound-for-pound, they are some of the loudest in the nation, which surely comes from their passion and loyalty.

Access    5

The Stan Sheriff Center is very accessible, and those who wish to attend a game should have no problem going wherever it is they please.

Oahu has a great public bus system (TheBus), where developments are being made to make an unlimited one-day bus pass that costs $5. Another option is to catch an Uber or Lyft to the arena, both of which are legal and functional on Oahu.

Parking costs just $6 and available for almost anyone, with the exception of sellouts. Traffic is mostly smooth, with the exception again being sellouts.

There are two entrances in the SSC on the same side of the arena, with a ticket counter in between the two.

The inside of the Stan Sheriff Center feels spacious and there shouldn't be a problem getting around. Although the main concourse has just a slight view of the playing surface, there are many openings in the arena which one can enter through. The restrooms are not the cleanest, and like all venues, halftime is the busiest time to go. But they get the job done.

Return on Investment    4

As the highest-level team in town, you know what you're getting when you watch a UH game.

The experience is well worth it. In terms of the rest of Hawaii, nothing compares on an athletic level, unless you're talking other UH teams.

Extras    3

It's Hawaii, and it's the best, albeit only, show in town. And although the team has fallen down somewhat in 2017 because of NCAA sanctions, the program is on the rise under head coach Eran Ganot.

Final Thoughts

Overall, the Stan Sheriff Center provides a worthwhile experience and a beautiful arena in a beautiful state.

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Crowd Reviews

Taking Jump Shots at the Sheriff

Total Score: 3.43

  • Food & Beverage: 4
  • Atmosphere 4
  • Neighborhood: 4
  • Fans: 4
  • Access: 3
  • RoI: 3
  • Extras: 2

While the island of O’ahu contains many memorable images of natural scenery, there are also some man-made structures that stand out.  With a height of 113 feet and aluminum dome, the Stan Sheriff Center certainly is one of them, acting as one of the most modern sporting venues in all of Hawaii.

Opened in 1994 as the Special Events Center, it was renamed in 1998 after former University of Hawaii at Monoa Athletic Director, Stan Sheriff, who put in countless efforts to ensure the venue was built.  It now serves as the home to the University of Hawai’i basketball and volleyball teams. Since construction, a few renovations have occurred, most notably in 1998, bringing the facility to where it is today with a capacity of 10,300.

Before playing at the Stan Sheriff Center, the Hawaii Rainbow Warriors spent 30 years (’64-’94) playing at the Neal S. Blaisdell Center.  The team spent little time getting accustomed to their new home, as they tallied 24 straight home wins between 2001 and 2003.

Great atmosphere

Total Score: 3.71

  • Food & Beverage: 4
  • Atmosphere 5
  • Neighborhood: 2
  • Fans: 4
  • Access: 3
  • RoI: 5
  • Extras: 3

Went to a Rainbow Warriors game and totally got into the experience. The crowd was loud, the team won and so everyone was happy coming home. Coming into the parking lot was fast and easy but coming out took some time as the main parking structure has 6 levels and everyone is spiraling down to the street level. The food was great. Macho nachos and Garlic fries are my favorites. There's a beer garden with the main beers plus Gordon Biersch. Would recommend to anyone who is visiting to come check out a game.

Shots from the Sheriff

Total Score: 4.14

  • Food & Beverage: 4
  • Atmosphere 4
  • Neighborhood: 5
  • Fans: 4
  • Access: 4
  • RoI: 4
  • Extras: 4

The Stan Sheriff Center (SSC) is a multipurpose arena opened in 1994 with a seating capacity of 10,300 at a construction cost of $32.24 million, equivalent to $51.5 million in 2016. The arena was originally named the Special Events Arena, but was renamed in 1998 after former University of Hawaii (UH) Athletic Director Stan Sheriff, a major advocate for the construction of the arena. The SSC is home to both UH’s men’s and women’s basketball and volleyball teams. The mid-season college basketball tournament, the Diamond Head Classic is held at the SSC every December during Christmas week. The SSC has also recently hosted the Los Angeles Lakers in the fall for a pair of exhibition match ups with the Utah Jazz.

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