Curtiss_P40EIt’s still the summer of Idaho and my family and I are hell bent on learning about our new home state. Here’s a pithy lesson: don’t try to discover Nampa, Idaho on a Sunday. The town is D E A D. Closed. Rolled up. The Flying M Coffee Garage was open. I’m used to the one in downtown Boise: hipsters, great gift shop, local art – and you have to be New-York-aggressive to find a place to sit.

In Nampa, there is plenty of space (well, especially on a Sunday) to stretch out, plug in your laptop and get to work. Same great coffee and pastries. And hipsters. Much cooler and expansive space.

warhawks_museumOur purpose in Nampa was to go to the Warhawk Air Museum, inside a hangar at the Nampa airport. The mission of the museum is to teach and preserve America’s history during times of war from the home front to the war front and aviation history from the advent of flight through the space age. The museum has two of only a few remaining Curtiss P-40 World War II Fighter Airplanes left in the world and a very rare World War II P-51C Mustang Fighter Airplane. It’s got lots of actual planes that you can’t touch and plenty of memorabilia if you are an aviation history buff.

Here’s the rub: my family includes no aviation history buffs. My 5 and 7 year olds were plenty put out at not being able to touch the airplanes. Still, if aviation history is your thing, you should definitely come to the museum. You will be in good company. We were the interlopers. Also, to get us all in the door, it cost $28 – kind of steep for a half hour of “fun.”

My daughter decided that she would practice her on-camera presence, as she has seen mommy do many times.  I’ll let you see how she’s coming along.  She’s 5 1/2:


After a lap at the museum, you can watch planes take off and land at the Blue Sky Café at the Nampa Airport. It’s a burger and sandwich kind of place and its view of the runway is top notch. We saw a tiny little airplane (see, no technical knowledge have I) take off and then buzz the runway before disappearing into the wild blue yonder. That was free. And that was FUN.