SHREVEPORT (KTAL/KMSS) – The USA Boxing National Championships, LHSAA State swim meet, and the 47th Annual Bayou Classic are just a few examples of Shreveport- Bossier ‘s rise as a sporting event host.
“I mean if you think about it, we have two great interstates, I-20 and 49, and then our Airport is phenomenal,” said Mathew Hammock, Partner/Sponsor Manager, Shreveport-Bossier Sports Commission. “We’ve got amazing facilities that want to have events whether its sporting events or other events. They are doing their part so its just our job to get them here.”
That is exactly what the Shreveport- Bossier Sports Commission has been doing in 2020. But this isn’t completly unchartered waters for the Port City.
“The USA Volleyball Olympic trails were held in Bossier City,” said Hammock. “Events like that, if it’s held in a major city, it’s just another event. Here it is our Super Bowl and we just know that our city’s hospitality is going to take great care of the athletes.”
Previously scheduled to be held in South Louisiana, the USA Boxing National Championships have relocated north and will now take place at the Convention Center on Dec. 5-12, 2020.
“We were actually looking to host the event next year in 2021 and when the Hurricane hit, they reached out,” said Hammock. “We very quickly put a bid together and we were just extremely happy to keep it in Louisiana and bring it to Shreveport.”
Also on the calendar, the LHSAA State swimming championships this November.
“Once we found out that the site was unavailable in Lake Charles, we just reached out to the LHSAA,” said Hammock. “Our team put together a strong bid and we were lucky enough to win it.”
Shreveport Mayor, Adrian Perkins, has been very vocal in supporting Shreveport- Bossier as a host city for major sporting events. The benefits extend beyond the millions in economic impact.
“It is extremely important to show that there is movement within our economy,” said Perkins. “That we can have these events that we use to see before 2020 back here in Shreveport. It is going to be a really encouraging thing for people to experience this year after all that we have been through.”
“With Shreveport- Bossier being a tier-three city, we wouldn’t host an event like a Super Bowl,” said Hammock. “We really find those niche sports that we want to come here, and one thing that we tell them and one thing that’s really true is we treat that event like it is the Super Bowl.”