Tour the Towns

Escape the city.  Embrace the byway.

The Boom or Bust Byway paves its way through the charming towns north of Shreveport such as Gilliam, Vivian and Oil City. This route offers road trippers some great places to stop and experience the hidden landscapes of Louisiana’s Other Side. If the natural beauty of the lakes and parks aren’t enough, travelers will experience the community’s resilience to the fluctuating industry of oil and agriculture. Visitors can discover treasured stories in museums along the byway. Their locals’ way of life can be experienced in restaurants, festivals and events along the route.

Outdoor sports enthusiasts, nature lovers, music fans, history buffs, and those who savor the fun and flavors of outdoor festivals and fairs will enjoy Webster Parish, Louisiana. Visitors are encouraged to savor the beautiful bayous, lakes and other natural wonders.

One of the towns along the Boom or Bust Byway worth a visit is Sarepta, named after parishioner Sarepta Carter who donated a large Bible to the local Baptist church in 1869 in exchange for the town’s namesake.

This charming community has produced a few stars including country music superstar Trace Adkins. His roots in the local church choir were the precursor to his Nashville success. Some of the songs he made popular are “Dreamin’ Out Loud,” “Every Light in the House,” and “Lonely Won’t Leave Me Alone.”

Grammy award-winning Cox Family is from this area, too. The family is best known for the song “I am Weary,” which is featured in the movie “O Brother, Where Art Thou?” After more than 20 years as a band, the Cox Family won their Grammy for work with Alison Krauss on “I Know Who Holds Tomorrow.”

If you are driving along the byway, be sure to stop at the interpretive kiosk next to Town Hall on Hwy. 371 to learn more about the history and culture of the area.

Claiborne Parish was formed in 1828 and was named for the first Louisiana Governor William C.C. Claiborne.

Here, the byway rolls across gentle hills lined with miles of forest and an occasional small town such as Athens, Homer and Lisbon.  In Homer, the town features one of the state’s finest examples of Greek Revival architecture and the only antebellum courthouse in Louisiana that has been in continuous use since its construction in 1859.

Lake Claiborne provides recreation for locals and visitors. This 6,300 acre lake offers fishing, swimming, birding, boating, cabins and much more.