Ford Idaho Center

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Ford Idaho Center
Location 16200 Idaho Center Blvd.
Nampa, Idaho, U.S.
Broke ground August 23, 1996 [1]
Opened July 1997
Operator SMG
Capacity 9,700-12,657 (end stage)
2,500-6,000 (theater)
13,067 (Center-stage)
Tenants
(former)
Idaho Stampede - CBA
Idaho Stallions - IPFL

The Ford Idaho Center is a complex of sports and entertainment venues in Nampa, Idaho, approximately 15 miles (24 km) west of Boise.

Venues include an indoor arena opened in 1997 with a seating capacity of 12,279 and 31,200 square feet (2,900 m2) of floor space and a 10,500-seat outdoor amphitheater opened in 1998 with a 60-by-40-foot stage. Additionally, the Idaho Horse Park is used for horse shows and the Sports Center is utilized for indoor track and field events, including the home meets of the Boise State University Broncos track teams. It features a 200-meter indoor track and hosted the 2012 NCAA Indoor Track Championships.

The Idaho Center arena is best known for rodeo. It annually hosts the Snake River Stampede, considered one of the nation's top rodeos, during the third week in July. The Stampede moved indoors to the Idaho Center arena in 1997; it was formerly held in an outdoor stadium (now demolished) near Lakeview Park.[2] Since 1999, the Professional Bull Riders (PBR) has hosted a Built Ford Tough Series (originally Bud Light Cup) event at the Idaho Center in what has been a major stop of the tour (although they did not visit the Idaho Center in 2011).

The arena is used for concerts, trade shows, sporting events, and other events. It is the former home of the Idaho Stampede of the Continental Basketball Association and the Idaho Stallions of the now defunct Indoor Professional Football League. The Idaho Center arena is the former home of the NAIA Division II Men's Basketball Tournament. Upon its completion, the tournament moved to the Idaho Center in 1998 from its former home on the campus of Northwest Nazarene University (then Northwest Nazarene College). The tournament left town in 2000 when NNC became a university and left the NAIA to join the NCAA in Division II.

In March 2004, the Idaho Center arena was the home court for the Boise State men's basketball team in the second round matchup in the NIT against the UWM Panthers. The game was moved to the Idaho Center due to a prior scheduled Metallica concert at Boise State's Taco Bell Arena. The game drew more than 10,000, the largest for a basketball game in the arena's history. BSU and Idaho played a non-conference basketball game at the arena on December 31, 2011; the Broncos won 76-73 before 7,540 spectators at the "neutral" site.[3]

The amphitheater hosts an annual Monster Jam event, and has also played host to music festivals, including The Vans Warped Tour, The Gigantour, The Lilith Fair, and The Mayhem Festival.

Pearl Jam performed during their Binaural Tour on November 3, 2000, with Supergrass as their opening act. The show was filmed and later released as a live album, titled 11/3/00 – Boise, Idaho. Tina Turner was scheduled to perform during her Twenty Four Seven Tour on December 9, 2000, but the show was cancelled.

The Rolling Stones played their first concert in the state of Idaho at the arena during their A Bigger Bang Tour on Tuesday, November 14, 2006.[4]

The Idaho Center has been the Treasure Valley stop of the Ringling Brothers and Barnum and Bailey Circus, Disney on Ice and Champions on Ice since it opened. It is frequently used as the regional stop for American Idols Live!

On January 14, 2014, the City of Nampa announced Ford as the new title sponsor for the Idaho Center. The facility will be renamed the Ford Idaho Center. As part of the deal, Ford will pay the City of Nampa $1 million over five years.[5]

North Nampa Urban Renewal Agency[edit]

In Nampa, the historic downtown was neglected for new and bigger stores on the outskirts of town and the North Nampa residential area became a place for lower income residents. The homes became neglected and crime rose in the area. To help combat this effect, the Nampa City Council created the North Nampa Urban Renewal Agency in 1994. As part of their urban renewal plan, the North Nampa Urban Renewal Agency gave interest-free loans to property owners to repair or replace their homes (improve their property).

NNURA members thought the idea of a convention center would invigorate the stagnant North Nampa. Property was purchased several miles from the targeted area to be improved and the Idaho Center was born. In spite of the NNURA's continued funding of the Idaho Center, the facility lost money from 1996 to 2004. The NNURA contributed at least $9.6 million to the operation costs of the Idaho Center. In 2004, the North Nampa Urban Renewal Agency expired (after 10 years) and was not renewed by the Nampa City Council.

Financial History[edit]

The financial performance of the Idaho Center shows a history of losses. In 2009, the center lost -$808,499. The 2010 loss was smaller but still at -$196,486. However, the 2011 year showed -$704,57 in losses. [6] In August 2012, the Nampa City Council approved $315,000 in subsidies to the Idaho Center. This was in addition to the $1.2 million in subsidies already spent during the 2012 budget year. [7]

Caldwell, Idaho blogger Paul Alldredge refers to the Idaho Center and Urban Renewal as having “no voting, no oversight and now a huge annual debt hung on the backs of Nampa taxpayers.” [8]

References[edit]

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 43°36′29″N 116°30′29″W / 43.608106°N 116.508175°W / 43.608106; -116.508175