Unknown Southern Vacation Stops: Shreveport

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Shreveport is a city located in the Northwest portion of Louisiana and although it isn’t the first Southern locale that comes to mind when we think of the South, it is bountiful with entertainment and culture. The town’s sister city, Bossier, is just across the river and between the two locations visitors and citizens are blessed with a lively nightlife, ample jobs and a family friendly atmosphere. These upcoming events and amenities will liven up any vacation to Shreveport and give visitors a look into the life of a Louisiana native by highlighting Cajun culture.

Mardi Gras in the Twin Cities of Louisiana

Most Americans know about Mardi gras celebrations in New Orleans however Shreveport throws a phenomenal Mardi Gras celebration. In 1989 Bossier City and Shreveport began throwing their own Mardi Gras event after the formation of the Krewe of Gemini.

Shreveport and Bossier City work together to plan and execute a parade that is one of the most successful in the state. Masked citizens ride atop vibrant, magnificent floats throwing watchers by beads, toys and doubloons minted by the Krewe. The Krewe of Gemini take pride in their Mardi Gras celebration that attracts tourists and Shreveport citizens alike.

Entertainment & Gambling on the River

The citizens of Shreveport work hard to ensure that their city maintains its history; in light of that mission they have revived the river boat casinos of the past. Six casinos sit atop the Red River that separates the thriving cities of Bossier and Shreveport. Casinos are open twenty-four hours and feature multiple levels of slots, table games, shows and restaurants.

The casino lights decorate the river and also offer great jobs for townsfolk aside never ending entertainment. The Horseshoe Hotel & Casino is a favorite among gamblers for their World Series of Poker table; they also have 50 world-class tables, 606 luxury suites and almost 1600 slots. It is truly the perfect location for a bachelorette party, birthday celebration or just a fun ladies night.

Haunted Trolley Tour

Louisiana is a state rich with tradition and along with a rich history comes some fantastic folklore. The Historic Haunts of Shreveport Trolley Tour is a perfect way to spend a Saturday evening with friends or family, and not just because all proceeds go to historic preservation efforts.  Those interested in the supernatural or just looking to do something different with their evenings will go on a guided tour of the Oakland Cemetery, The Logan Mansion and other historically haunted Shreveport locations.

Aside from the normal tour, guests are now invited to join a special paranormal investigation on March 7th. The Louisiana Paranormal Investigators are pairing with the Historic Haunts of Shreveport to uncover the secrets of The Logan Mansion. Grab tickets while you still can because space is limited, proceeds will go to preserving historic monuments.

Mudbug Madness Crawfish Eating Festival

For 31 years Shreveport has been home to a four-day festival that celebrates Louisiana crawfish and other delicacies. The Mudbug Madness festival comes up in late May and was founded on the principle that Shreveport has Louisiana culture running through their veins. In 1984 Shreveport locals gathered downtown for their favorite Louisiana pastime, a crawfish cook boil that started all of the madness.

This exciting festival that drew in 56,000 attendees last year features music, crafts and of course crawfish. Mudbug Madness is a Shreveport institution and draws in fantastic revenue that is seeded into other festivals in town like the ‘Jazz and Gumbo Festival’ and ‘Cinco de Mayo’. Enjoy the free shuttle to the festival from Mall St. Vincent or the Pierre-Bossier Mall to take part in the celebration of Cajun culture.

Bass Fishing Competition for Charity

Anglers can come out for a good cause and great challenge for the Heroes on the Water fishing tournament. Heroes on the Water is a charity that benefits soldiers in their rehabilitation through kayak fishing trips. The Bayou Pirates Kayak Fishing Club is hosting a kayak fishing tournament with proceeds going to this fantastic cause.

Fishermen will compete for the best bass at the Red River National Wildlife Refuge where visitors can also enjoy hiking and bird watching while capturing brilliant photos of wildlife and sunsets. The competition will prove lively and the scenery will be the icing on the cake.

Cara Wietstock is a Southern California native addidicted to travelling the road “less taken”. She enjoys all that the wanderlust lifestyle has to offer. Find her on Google+

Photo Credit: Arete13 via Compfight cc

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