John Stewart once called Shreveport “the third most glamorous city in the state of Louisiana”…I think that is a bit of a slight on Lake Charles, but nevertheless, much of the college football world will be descending upon the Port City for the only match-up of ranked teams as Texas A&M braves the intersection at I-20 and Jewella to come take on Louisiana Tech in their home away from home at Independence Stadium. Most Aggie fans are quite familiar with the stadium, having played a few games there over the years, including the memorable 2000 Snow Bowl, but just in case it’s been a while since last they visited, I, as a Port City native, have decided to roll out bullet-riddled red carpet of Shreveport and offer a few suggestions:
Never, ever, under any circumstances, not even if someone with a cowboy hat and a trusting face tells you that the Rockin’ Rodeo is a good time, go over the Red River into Bossier. They are going to entice you with tales of less random gun violence and a Bass Pro Shop, but don’t fall for their clever ruse. It’s nothing but tramp stamps, paternity tests, and airborne herpes over there. Avoid it at all costs.
There is one caveat to the above…there is an All-You-Can-Eat Waffle House on Airline Drive by the mall. No, seriously, such a place does actually exist. I know, right! That is important late night information.
Unless senseless violence and packs of stray dogs roaming the streets is your idea of must-see vacation attractions, you’d best just stay on the East side of I-49 and I-20 until gameday.
The casinos aren’t so much casinos as they are just floating check cashing establishments where middle aged women in unfortunate cocktail dresses will turn your paycheck into watered-down bourbon and cokes and the occasional all-you-can-eat crab leg buffet.
Just so you are aware of your surroundings, Independence Stadium is at the Fairgrounds. It is in a less-than-great to really-not-great neighborhood. For context, once, to promote non-violence in the neighborhood, the city organized a “Super Safe Sundays” event on the Fairgrounds. There were only 5 people shot that day at the event.
You are at the Fairgrounds for the game, so pretty much anything this side of RedDog is acceptable as alcohol worthy of consumption, but class it up a bit will you, and at least go pick up some Abita Amber or Pecan. As for stouter booze, I would advise you to acknowledge what I am about to show you and tip your hat my way when you are complimented on gameday for your discerning Louisiana tastes.
As for your opponents, on the whole, the fans of Louisiana Tech are good people. They will dog cuss you the moment you say a disparaging word about their team, but they will still invite you to the First Baptist Church of Ruston pot luck supper on Sunday night.
The “Move it Like Bernie Dance” originated in Shreveport. I feel like this is important to know.
The neon bridge downtown is kind of a novelty. They say that when you look at it head on you can see a bull in the design. The only thing I’ve seen at that bridge is a few drug deals and a one or two unsolved homicides.
DO NOT FEED OUR MAYOR
Forget trying to find some authentic Cajun food in town….Shreveport, for all intents and purposes, is east Texas. Go have a steak and au gratin potatoes at The Cub (there are only like 6 tables, so a reservation might be a good idea) and and then stick around for the hordes of former LSU students that couldn’t make it for longer than a semester in Baton Rouge to fill the bar for your general people watching enjoyment. But, if you packed your Affliction shirts and bedazzled jeans, or you are a middle-aged divorce’ with a after-market boob job and low self-esteem, perhaps Superior Grill (their margaritas are considered weapons in more gun-restrictive states) would be a good place to try.
Drive-thru daiquiri stores are your friend. Don’t let that little piece of masking tape they place over the lids deter you. You guys are known for your engineering, after all, so I’m sure that you can somehow figure a way to circumvent that impenetrable level of security.
In related links…just gonna leave this list of area bail bondsmen right here.
The Independence Bowl was once the home of the CFL-expansion-into-the US failure, The Shreveport Pirates. If you drop the names of Billy Joe Tolliver or Bjorn Nitmo in the presence of locals at the tialgates, they will shower you with drinks and any number of gumbo/stew concoctions.
You need to be familiar with the most famous of Shreveport native sons and citizens. This list includes: Terry Bradshaw, Stan Humphries, Albert Belle, Tim Brando, Hank Williams Jr., Kix Brooks, Hurricane Chris, Johnnie Cochran, Kenny Wayne Shephard, Jared Leto, Robert Parish, Antawn Jamison, Shoji Tabuchi, Danny Rolling, Hal Sutton, Hal Sutton’s boob sweat, and David Toms
Josh Booty is also from Shreveport…this is more warning than just a factual statement.
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