Culture and Entertainment in Shreveport-Bossier
By Vange Tapia
One of the most pleasant surprises during my trip to Louisiana was discovering the place that is known as Shreveport-Bossier: Louisiana’s Other Side. There are two cities in one, and everything is close together, including a number of arts and culture attractions.
A Commitment to Public Art
Shreveport-Bossier offers wonderful places to discover arts and culture. Some city buses, walls and benches all serve as canvases for some of the area’s greatest artists.
As soon as I arrived, I noticed a couple of attractive murals. One of my favorites was “A Call to Action,” which can be seen during the day and at night with its neon LED lights. I also enjoyed “Once in a Millennium Moon,” which covers two sides of the 13-story AT&T building.
Known as a cultural district, downtown Shreveport has encouraged local artists to express themselves with murals and interactive art studios. For example, Artspace is a historic building where all disciplines of the arts are created, connecting with the public in new and exciting ways. They even let me paint on the wall!
Near there, I visited the Multicultural Center of the South, which promotes culture and diversity from around the world. About 20 minutes away, I stopped by and smelled the roses at the gardens of the American Rose Center, which has more than 20,000 bushes.
Around here, there are cultural celebrations and festivals throughout the year. Shreveport is famous for its Mudbug Madness Festival – a four-day crawfish celebration in May with family-friendly activities, all kinds of music, Cajun cuisine and contests.
With more than 140 visual artists from across the country, the Red River Revel Arts Festival is the largest outdoor arts festival in northern Louisiana. They sure know how to have fun here!
Walking the Outlets at Louisiana Boardwalk
Across the Red River from downtown Shreveport is the Outlets at Louisiana Boardwalk in Bossier City. Praised as the state’s largest and original outdoor “lifestyle center,” the boardwalk offers tax-free shopping for international visitors. This outdoor mall has dining and family-friendly entertainment such as a movie theater, an arcade and a carousel. I couldn’t resist riding on it.
On both sides of the river, the six casinos offer slots and gaming tables, as well as dining and entertainment options of their own. Most notable is the brand-new Margaritaville Resort Casino. This resort hosts an enormous casino plus an 18-story hotel with several restaurants and bars, a tropical pool deck and a state-of-the-art entertainment space.
The boardwalk gets you close to many of the riverboat casinos that the area is famous for. I took a boat tour on the Spirit of the Red River Cruise and got to see Shreveport and Bossier from the Red River.
There’s so much fun to be found in Shreveport-Bossier. Come on over and see Louisiana’s Other Side!