Featured photo: A screen capture from Sci-Port Discovery Center’s #TodayAtSciport online programming.

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to affect communities around the world, the vast majority of public attractions like restaurants, museums and non-essential retail shops have closed to the public. However, a handful of attractions in Shreveport-Bossier are offering free, online programming that offers the public—and especially families—a rare opportunity to relax and have fun together during these difficult times. Here are some of our favorite examples.

Sci-Port Discovery Center
Like Sci-Port Discovery Center on Facebook
Donate to Sci-Port Discovery Center

While the interactive exhibits and galleries at Sci-Port Discovery Center are always fun, the real magic of this 92,000-square-foot science museum in downtown Shreveport has always been their terrific staff. Each day during the COVID-19 crisis, Sci-Port’s staff is hosting two activities that will stream live to their Facebook page. These activities range from interactive science lessons with downloadable handouts to simply reading together.

Robinson Film Center
Like Robinson Film Center on Facebook
Donate to Robinson Film Center

Robinson Film Center, a two-screen, not-for-profit indie cinema and restaurant located in the heart of downtown Shreveport, is offering lots of different ways to stay engaged with their community of local movie lovers. Coming up on Thursday night, March 26, RFC Executive Director Meghan Hochstetler will host the first installment of “Meghan’s Movie Club,” a streaming conversation about Billy Wilder’s classic comedy Some Like It Hot (RSVP to that conversation on Facebook here). Centenary College of Louisiana’s film history professor, Dr. Jefferson Hendricks, is presenting online film classes each Monday.

Chimp Haven
Like Chimp Haven on Facebook
Donate to Chimp Haven

Chimp Haven, America’s National Chimpanzee Sanctuary, is located just a short drive from Shreveport-Bossier in Keithville, Louisiana. While they’re not exactly hosting virtual programs, they are sharing regular videos of “the chimp life,” which present a fun opportunity for families to share and discuss everything from animal welfare to the beauty of the natural world. Several times each year, Chimp Haven hosts “Chimpanzee Discovery Day” events that are open to the public; you can see the tentative schedule of Chimpanzee Discovery day events on their website.

R.W. Norton Art Gallery’s Oral History Project
Like R.W. Norton Art Gallery on Facebook

This isn’t related to the COVID-19 pandemic, but R.W. Norton Art Gallery in Shreveport has been gathering stories from community members for years. These recorded stories fall into categories like “Oil and Gas,” “Musical Pioneers,” “Veterans,” and “The Civil Rights Movement,” and you can stream them online. Use this website to search stories by topic. One great way for families to use this incredible database of true stories from Shreveport-Bossier locals may be to watch a film on a given topic (WWII, for example) and then listen to a story on the same topic.

If you’re not familiar with R.W. Norton Art Gallery, by the way, it’s an incredible museum and botanical gardens. You can learn more about “the Norton” here.

Know of another resource for online or virtual programming from Shreveport-Bossier attractions? Let us know! Please e-mail CJay@sbctb.org, and we’ll add your resource to this post.