By the time the 44th Walk-On’s Independence Bowl kicks-off at 3 p.m. on Thursday, Dec. 26 at Independence Stadium, I will already have gotten my money’s worth in entertainment from the nation’s eleventh-oldest bowl game. This year’s match-up on the gridiron will feature the locally beloved Louisiana Tech Bulldogs taking on “the U,” the University of Miami Hurricanes. Tickets range from $30-$45 and may be purchased here. The game will be televised on ESPN.

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By now, anyone who has been paying attention may have noticed that events surrounding the game – events that are included in the price of your ticket – have dramatically improved in recent years. Last year, Chef John Folse served the world’s largest pot of gumbo right up until kick-off. This year, Grammy-nominated NOLA funk group Cha Wa will perform at the Official Tailgate Party right outside of the stadium’s north end beginning at 12:30 p.m. Local party movers The Good News will open for Cha Wa at 10 a.m.

NOLA funk group Cha Wa will perform at the 44th Walk-On’s Independence Bowl in Shreveport on Thursday, Dec. 26. Courtesy photo.

The pre-game party will also offer food prepared by popular local Chef Jason Brady, proprietor of Parish Taceaux as well as the outstanding Southern Fork food truck.

I’ve loved a lot about recent installments of the I-Bowl, from chopping it up with Boston College fans who’d discovered Great Raft Brewing and fallen in love with Reasonably Corrupt a few years back (it’s my favorite local beer, too) to super-delicious stadium catering from Marilynn’s Place (and immaculate weather) in 2018. I also admire the fact that the most expensive tickets you can buy to this game – sideline bench seats – are $45.

With this year’s pre-game party including one of the most unique party bands in New Orleans (which is to say the world) and food from a top local chef, I’m excited for another great game day experience.

Looking for more info on Shreveport-Bossier? Download our 2019 Official Visitors’ Guide.

20× is a publication of the Shreveport-Bossier Convention and Tourist Bureau.