When I arrived in Shreveport, my first impression was that I had found Biff Tannen’s alternate future from Back to the Future II. Massive casinos line both sides of the Red River and the Hustler Club is prominently placed nearby. The streets were empty and the rest of town appeared to be falling apart, except for the outet mall across the river which seemed to be the place to go.. As I looked closer though, I started to find Shreveport’s hidden gems. The Noble Savage Tavern on Texas Street, for example, where great local food, drinks and music are only made better by the excellent staff. Or at Strawn’s Eat Shop out on King’s Highway, where I got the best slice of pie I’ve ever had in my life (their strawberry ice box pie). Then I started spotting some of the lovely murals and public art projects around town and I started to come around on the place. Finally I went to two wonderful local festivals where I ate well, heard some great music and met many of the wonderful people that live there. Shreveport took a major hit when Standard Oil left town in the eighties, but seems to me on the upswing. There are some beautiful old buildings around town, though many are in desperate need of repair. There is much to love about the Ratchet City, but much like a great blues song you need to look a little deeper to see what makes it special. I hope you enjoy these photos from my visit to Shreveport.