Shreveport, Louisiana, is located along the banks of the Red River in the northwestern corner of the state. Shreveport is named after Captain Henry Miller Shreve of the United States Army Corps of Engineers. He was tasked with clearing the Red River to the point of the Texas Trail in order to make it navigable. After making his way through a 180-mile-long natural log jam, he was honored for his efforts with the naming of the settlement. The area has a rich history in steamboat commerce. In the early 1900s, the community became famous for its vibrant music scene. Riverboat gambling and tours spurred rapid economic growth in the late 20th century.
Today, Shreveport is recognized for its many historic homes and its large film industry. It has recently earned the nickname of "Hollywood of the South," with more than 30 films and miniseries television shows made in the city since 2006. Another 200 short films have been made by independent producers. Many annual events and festivals also take place in Shreveport, including the Barksdale Air Force Base show held each year in the spring, the Louisiana State Fair held in autumn and the Red River Revel, which is an arts festival taking place in October. About 200,311 people call Shreveport home, and the population continues to grow each year. The city offers a lower-than-average cost of living, many opportunities to discover the arts and plenty of space to enjoy the great outdoors. Upon getting unpacked after your move to Shreveport, you may wish to explore these 10 exciting places.
Shreveport Water Works Museum
At the Shreveport Water Works Museum, you can learn all about the world's first steam-powered water treatment plant. This facility is home to the original steam engines and turbines that powered the McNeil pumping station. The equipment was retired in 1980 after more than nine decades of use. The waterworks was the first in Shreveport, and it was built in 1887 in order to deliver fresh, clean and sanitary water throughout the city. Before it was built, wealthy citizens imported water from nearby springs while poor citizens had to make use of cisterns. The waterworks was also important to fighting the fires that often ignited and spread throughout the city's original wooden buildings. The Shreveport Water Works Museum offers guided tours, or you can peruse its exhibits at your own leisure. (Photo Credit: http://shreveportwaterworks.org/)
Sci-Port: Louisiana's Science Center
The whole family can learn and discover new things at Sci-Port: Louisiana's Science Center. This learning and education center has permanent exhibits on topics such as the Red River, mathematics, the planets, water and physics. There is an entire section of Sci-Port devoted to play with life-size building blocks, water tables, imaginative play props and more. The space dome planetarium allows you to visualize all of the constellations at different times of the year. Sci-Port: Louisiana's Science Center also has its own IMAX dome and a gift shop. There is a cafe on site. Rental rooms are available for birthday parties and other celebrations. Special events take place on a regular basis, so check the schedule to learn more.
The R.W Norton Art Gallery
Take in a wide variety of works of art with a trip to the R.W Norton Art Gallery. This gallery is home to many rare books, such as "Birds of America" by John James Audubon. There are American and European paintings, including "Richard Robert Graham" by Sir Joshua Reynolds. More than 400 paintings are on display, ranging in style from Renaissance to Neo-modern. The R.W Norton Art Gallery is also home to many metal, glass and clay sculptures, such as "Pig" by Lloyd Atkins. Outside of the museum, there are gardens filled with annual and perennial flowers and statues. Peruse their calendar for special events, such as artist lectures and classes to make your own works of art.
Louisiana State Exhibit Museum
Discover multiple aspects of Louisiana's history when you tour the Louisiana State Exhibit Museum. This museum was built in the 1930s and houses a large number of dioramas that depict scenes from nature. The Louisiana State Exhibit Museum is also home to many Native American works of art. You can tour the collections of paintings, pottery and drawings created by artists from around Louisiana. There is a collection of autographs, and you can leave your own in their guest book. Check out the historical artifacts dating back to the Civil War. The Louisiana State Exhibit Museum also provides displays and interactive exhibits about migratory waterfowl and insects native to Louisiana. There are educational events taking place throughout the year, such as informational sessions about the Red River.
Splash Kingdom Waterpark
On a hot summer day, there is nothing quite like cooling off at the Splash Kingdom Waterpark. This family-friendly attraction features a wave pool, a lazy river and dozens of water slides. Try out the tunnel-style slides that whirl, twist and zip through the air, resulting in a splash into the pool at the end of the journey. The Splash Kingdom Waterpark also hosts an activity pool for kids. Try out your skills at their sand volleyball courts. After all of that activity, visit their concession stand to get snacks such as popcorn and soft drinks or order an entire pizza to share with your companions. The Splash Kingdom Waterpark is open from the spring through the early autumn. Check for special events, such as family movie nights.
Walter B. Jacobs Memorial Nature Park
Lace up your hiking boots or athletic shoes and tour the Walter B. Jacobs Memorial Nature Park. This natural space provides 5 miles of nature trails through a hickory, pine and oak hardwood forest. Keep your eyes open for animals such as the white-tailed deer. The park also has a handicap-accessible trail that is ideal for people with wheelchairs or baby strollers. A visitor's center offers maps and information along with occasional educational programs and special events. There are park benches and picnic tables near the visitor's center, or you can rent the park's pavilion for your large party. The site has plenty of paved parking and is open daily.
Shreveport Municipal Auditorium
Catch a great country, gospel, blues or rock 'n' roll concert at the Shreveport Municipal Auditorium. This ornate facility features a vast stage for all types of performances. Professional sound and lighting systems immerse you into the show. Events change and are added on a regular basis, and tickets can be purchased online or in person at the box office. You can also make an appointment for a guided tour of the Shreveport Municipal Auditorium when there is not a special event taking place.
If you have never tried Cajun food cooked by an expert in this style of cuisine, Crawdaddy's Kitchen is the place to go. Crawdaddy's Kitchen has an extensive menu of all types of shrimp and crawfish, all cooked in the Louisiana Cajun style. Try the dishes such as crawfish etouffee, gumbo or fried catfish. The chefs also serve raw or steamed oysters. If steak is your thing, you can order USDA prime beef. Be sure to quench your thirst with sweet teas, lemonade or soda.
Herby K's is a casual eatery open Monday through Saturday. The relaxed atmosphere includes televisions with sports games. The menu at Herby K's includes cheeseburgers, hamburgers, hot dogs, Cajun sausage, fried shrimp and po'boy sandwiches. Customize your order with the toppings and sides of your choice, such as French fries, onion rings, tomatoes, relish and dill pickles. The eatery also has a kids' menu. You can take your order to go or dine in to enjoy drinks like beer, wine, mixed drinks, soda, tea and lemonade. (Photo Credit: http://www.herbyks.net/)
The Blind Tiger
Relocating to a new home
The Blind Tiger offers Cajun foods with a twist. The restaurant's specialties include gumbo, fried shrimp and seafood. You can also try the pasta Alfredo with grilled shrimp or chicken. The Blind Tiger has an extensive menu of beers, wines and mixed drinks. Save some room for desserts, which include tasty peach cobbler. The restaurant is open for lunch, dinner and cocktails. The Blind Tiger is located in the popular River District neighborhood.
in Shreveport, LA, means that you will need to discover new restaurants, shopping centers, outdoor spaces and places to visit for fun. Instead of trying to guess about where to visit with your new friends, neighbors or coworkers, you can start with this list. Each of these 10 places highlights some of the unique qualities of the community. These destinations allow you to sample the culture, arts, outdoors and tastes of Shreveport. After you have visited all of the places on this list, you may be inspired to keep on discovering the city's exciting attractions.