Travel to Shreveport and Bossier City in the Ark-La-Tex
There is a renewed interest in Shreveport, the great North Louisiana city located in the heart of the Ark-La-Tex.
Shreveport is booming with the success of the casino industry, the opening of the Shreveport Convention Center, the Haynesville Shale natural gas discoveries, the expanding motion picture & TV industry, and the Louisiana Boardwalk in Bossier City across the Red River.
Shreveport Attractions and Entertainment
The Shreveport waterfront along the Red River is the home of restaurants, museums, retail stores, convention facilities and gaming and gambling casinos.
The Barnwell Art & Garden Center, the Norton Art Gallery, the Municipal Auditorium where Elvis Presley, Hank Williams, and other stars of the 50s and 60s made history draw significant numbers of visitors to the area.
The historic Strand Theater at 619 Louisiana Avenue dates to 1925 and today is the site of a variety of performances, films, musicals and other events.
The Louisiana State Exhibit Museum on the grounds of the Louisiana State Fair, the American Rose Center and other attractions make Shreveport a regional tourism destination.
Shreveport-Bossier Casinos & Racetracks
The Shreveport-Bossier area is home to a variety of gaming venues:
- Horseshoe Hotel & Casino
- Sam’s Town Hotel & Casino
- Diamond Jack’s Casino Resort
- Eldorado Casino Resort
- Boomtown Casino
- Margaritaville Resort Casino
- Harrah’s Louisiana Downs horse track and casino
National Hot Air Balloon Championship
The Red River Hot Air Balloon Rally and the National Hot Air Balloon Championships are being held in the Shreveport area in 2016.
The events are scheduled for July 14-20, 2016.
The opening ceremonies are at Margaritaville Casino in Bossier City, and the balloon rally and competition will be at the LSU-Shreveport campus.
For more information, visit the official website of Shreveport-Bossier Sports Commission
State Fair of Louisiana
The State Fair of Louisiana has announced the theme for the 110th State Fair of Louisiana which will take place on October 27 - November 13, 2016 (closed on Mondays). The phrase, "STEP RIGHT UP" is the 2016 theme which will be used in all of the State Fair marketing.
The mission of the State Fair is to promote the industrial and agricultural resources of the great State of Louisiana and to provide a better quality of life for its citizens through education and entertainment.
The State Fair Grounds are located on I-20 west of downtown Shreveport.
For more information, visit the official website of the State Fair of Louisiana
Red River Revel
The Red River Revel is an annual event held at Festival Plaza in downtown Shreveport. The next Revel is scheduled for October 1-8, 2016.
The Red River Revel began in 1976 as the Junior League of Shreveport’s Bicentennial gift to the citizens of the region. The goal of the festival is to provide the general populace a celebration of the finest visual and performing arts experiences.
In addition to bringing in hundreds of visual and performing artists each year, the festival attracts thousands of out-of-state visitors each year.
For more information, visit the official website of the Red River Revel
The annual Camping World Independence Bowl held in late December in Shreveport features two of the nation's top NCAA Division I teams. The Independence Bowl’s history spans four decades, with the inaugural game being played in 1976. The stadium seats more than 50,000 fans.
The next Independence Bowl is scheduled for December 26, 2016 with kickoff at 4:00pm CST.
In August of 2011, ESPN and Independence Bowl officials announced a new mutli-year agreement that would extend the partnership through 2017. In 2013, the agreement was extended until 2019.
For detailed information about the game and scheduled events, and to order tickets online, visit the official website of the Independence Bowl
Mudbug Madness in Shreveport
Part of the festivities at Mudbug Madness in Shreveport (Photograph courtesy of the LA Office of Tourism)
Mudbug Madness is a four day festival celebrating Louisiana crawfish & cuisine, along with great entertainment on three stages for all ages. It is held held at Festival Plaza in Downtown Shreveport.
What began in 1984 as a two-day street festival in downtown Shreveport is now one of Louisiana’s largest and most popular Cajun festivals, featuring renown Cajun, Zydeco, Blues and Jazz artists, mouth-watering Cajun cuisine, raucous contests, and fun for all ages.
Now a four-day festival held each Memorial Day weekend, Mudbug Madness is nationally recognized as one of the Southeast Tourism Society’s Top 20 Events, drawing more than 50,000 people in one day.
Mudbug Madness created renewed interest in Louisiana’s rich cultural heritage and the event’s original organizers are proud to have brought a little bit of south Louisiana fun north to Shreveport.
For more information, visit the official website of Mudbug Madness
Just across the Red River downtown is the Louisiana Boardwalk, located at 540 Boardwalk Boulevard, a beautiful shopping mecca. It features dozens of upscale shopping venues such as Wet Seal, Dress Barn, Fossil, Lane Bryant and much more. Dining opportunities include Hooters, Copelands Cheesecake Bistro, Salt Grass Steakhouse, Joe's Crabshack and other restaurants.
The Boardwalk also includes the Regal Cinema and Courtyard by Marriott, and nearby Bass Pro Shops and Margaritaville Casino.
Shreveport Hotels, Motels, Lodging and Restaurants
Shreveport Municipal Auditorium and the Louisiana Hayride Video ... from Louisiana Travel
Holiday in Dixie
One of the oldest festivals in the South, Holiday in Dixie in Shreveport celebrates the beginning of spring and the Louisiana Purchase. Held in Festival Plaza, this popular event includes a 10-day carnival, parade, treasure hunt, live music and family fun.
The Ark-La-Tex Ambassadors hosted its 68th annual Holiday in Dixie Festival on April 15-24, 2016.
For more information, visit the official website of Holiday in Dixie
CMT has launched the TV show "Bayou Billionaires," meant for everyone who has ever dreamed of striking it rich overnight. The show focuses on the Dowden family of Shreveport who struck it rich from oil money from the Haynesville Shale natural gas play in northwest Louisiana.
The Dowdens' home sits right on top of this huge deposit of natural gas. After years of pinching pennies and balancing budgets, Gerald, Kitten, Chantel and the rest of the Dowden family are ready to enjoy the finer things in life, sparing no expense. They all live on a "compound" near the small town of Frierson, located south of Shreveport, off I-49 between Stonewall and Caspiana in DeSoto Parish.
CMT also launched another new series in January of 2012, "My Big Redneck Vacation," featuring several North Louisiana families. The script portrays a group of countrified, loud-mouthed families from Louisiana as they move into a $4 million home in the Hamptons of New York. Episodes include polo lessons, wine-tasting, and a wedding. The families in the show are from the area just southwest of Shreveport, near Keachi, Keithville and Stonewall.
Central Arts Station
Central Fire Station, Shreveport, Louisiana,
the new home of Central Artstation
Central Artstation, a $4.5 million project, is currently underway in downtown Shreveport by the Shreveport Regional Arts Council (SRAC).
Everyone in Shreveport knows this classic building at 801 Crockett Street with its green glazed terra cotta style tile roof.
Built in 1922, it remained in use as a fire station until 2004. The historic structure was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1991.
The restoration and renovation project will provide offices for SRAC’s administrative staff, and will also will provide developmental space for artists and arts organizations.
To be included are a rehearsal space, production space, Emerging Arts Gallery, and artists' tower.
The building also will be lit from the outside, which will make it glow, a virtual beacon to artists and the public in the growing Shreveport cultural district.
Architects are LeBlanc & Young Architects. Completion was in late summer of 2012.
Barksdale Air Force Base
United States Air Force Thunderbirds F-16
Another major element of the Shreveport-Bossier City economy is Barksdale Air Force Base, long a major Strategic Air Command (SAC) facility. Construction began on Barksdale Field in 1931, and the facility was dedicated on February 2, 1933.
Since that time, the base has hosted a number of key operational and training elements of the Air Force. Today, it is serves as Headquarters of the Eighth Air Force, among other units, and is one of only two air bases at which B-52 Stratofortress bombers are stationed.
It always a thrill to see the U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds perform at the Barksdale AFB Defenders of Liberty air show.
Alexandria and Shreveport have been connected via the Red River for eons, and later via LA Highway 1 and Interstate 49. We have traversed those highways between the two cities literally hundreds of times.
We grew up in Shreveport, and our connections with Shreveport are strong, from the past, and to this day. Today, we make frequent trips to Shreveport from nearby Tyler, Texas.
We see reminders of the good times whenever we travel there, and when we filter back through the historic photographs and postcards of the past.
As we drive past the retro motels along historic U.S. 80, and cruise the antique shops and residences on Line Avenue, the City of Shreveport continues to have a fond place in our hearts, and minds.
Ever since the Red River was cleared and made newly navigable by Captain Henry Shreve, who removed a 180-mile long logjam, Shreveport has exhibited an entrepreneurial spirit that remains strong even today.
In 1994, the Red River was again made navigable, this time by the U.S. by the Army Corps of Engineers with the completion of a series of lock-and-dam structures and a navigation channel.
Today, Shreveport-Bossier City is again being developed as a port and shipping center.For more information, we recommend contacting the Shreveport - Bossier Convention & Tourist Bureau
Shreveport Louisiana Map
Shreveport-Bossier Links and Resources