Nampa is the largest city in Canyon County with a population of over 100,000 people. Although not verified, it seems the name came from a Shoshoni word for "footprint" or "moccasin." There is also a town in Canada with the name of "Nampa."
Folks started settling in the area in the 1880s when the Oregon Short Line Railroad passed through Nampa as it went from Wyoming to Oregon. As an important railroad town, Nampa doubled it its first year and was incorporated in 1890 or 1891. The town had one of the fanciest railroad depots of the time. \
Many referred to the settlement as "New Jerusalem" due to the religious intent of its inhabitants. One of the town fathers refused to sell land to anyone who might
build a saloon.
A Silver City miner and millionaire, Colonel William H. Dewey, spent a quarter of a million dollars building the Dewey Palace Hotel in 1902. It survived Nampa's devastating downtown fire of 1909 but was razed in the early 1960s because no one wanted to take on the task of refurbishing it. A few historic relics are on display at the Canyon Country Historical Museum.
Lake Lowell, as it's know to locals, was formed between 1906 and 1911. The area around it is the Deer Flat National Wildlife Refuge. The lake almost 15 square miles and is known for its boating, fishing, birding, and wildlife sighting. Over 200 species of birds can be found in the refuge. Hunting and fishing are allowed during the regular Idaho hunting and fishing seasons.
July, 2021 will mark the 106th Snake River Stampede held at the Ford Idaho Center in Nampa. This event is one of the top ten professional rodeos in the US. This event started as a simple local, bucking horse competition.
Rodeo events include bronc riding and saddle bronc riding, bull riding, ladies barrel racing, steer wrestling, tie-down roping, and team roping. Kids get to enjoy mutton busting. The ever popular Snake River Stampede Night Light Drill Team will perform.
The Nampa Recreation Center is comprised
of 140,000 square feet of indoor
activities and fun.
Some of the amenities include five indoor swimming pools offering a full schedule of aquatic classes; basketball and racquetball courts; cardio equipment throughout the facility; rock climbing walls and weight equipment. There is also a senior center and a preschool located on the property. The St. Alphonsus Rehabilitation Services also have a facility at the center.
There are fees which include discounts for families and seniors.