Jefferson Parish is truly the best of both worlds: a family-oriented location with quick access to a major city. A huge draw for sports tourism, the parish is home to the brand-new New Orleans airport, completed in 2019. Jefferson Parish’s hotels offer complimentary airport shuttles and breakfast, just seven miles from downtown. Here, guests will enjoy unbeatable hotel rates with free parking. The draw to Jefferson Parish is flexibility, convenience, and affordability offered to every visitor.

Sights to See

As the largest parish in Louisiana, Jefferson Parish boasts a variety of family-friendly sites to see and activities for all ages and interests. The parish is separated by the Mississippi River, creating the East and West Bank. The East Bank is more of your land activities, while the West Bank has all your water activities. From the swamp tours to canoeing and fishing, their two state parks and the aquarium, your options for outdoor activities with the kids are plenty.  

To catch some super unique sports, check out NOLA Motorsports Park to see the racetrack. NOLA Gold, the local Major League Rugby Team, plays at The Gold Mine on Airline Stadium. Definitely watch a game to experience the incredible energy of professional rugby. 

At the Ochsner Sports Performance Center in Metairie, Louisiana, you can check out the New Orleans Saints at their Training Camp. Strolling through the facility, you’ll stumble upon the Saints’ trophies, awards, old jerseys and other paraphernalia.  

With a mix of indoor and outdoor facilities, and small- and large-scale facilities on both the East and West Bank of the Mississippi, you will without a doubt find the right fit for your sport here. 

On the East Bank, the Pontchartrain Convention & Civic Center has 50,000 square feet of event space. The convention center is most known to host basketball, gymnastics and cheer events. Over on the West Bank, the John A Alario Event Center has 60,000 square feet of space. With six NBA-style basketball courts, they are a huge asset for basketball tournaments. The space often hosts gymnastics tournaments, as well as city graduations. 

Places to Stay

With a range of hotel options, from affordable rates to higher-end stays, Jefferson Parish offers comfort and convenience for your trip. Across the county, you’ll find essentially every major brand, from Hilton to Marriott and Double Tree. New Orleans Marriott Metairie at Lakeway, is one of the county’s 4-star hotels. Not only does it provide a luxurious stay with quick access to the airport, but you might also find some Saints players there during the preseason. 

Past and Future Events

Memorial Day Weekend 2021, Jefferson Parish successfully hosted the Collegiate Rugby Championship, May Madness 7s. NOLA Gold Rugby hosted the teams at The Gold Mine on Airline, their home field. 

NOLA Gold Rugby
NOLA Gold Rugby

On April 8, 2021, more than 500 bicyclists competed in the Bayou Classic Nationals at Gretna BMX. Gretna BMX is a fun-filled family destination in Gretna, LA and a unique opportunity to see this action-packed sport. 

The future feels hopeful and busy for Jefferson Parish, with large-scale tournaments on the calendar for baseball, quidditch and more. 

Looking Forward & Expanding

2021 was busier than ever for Jefferson Parish. Even at the start of the year, teams were eager and hopeful to put events on the books for the coming months. A major goal for 2021 was to bring more unique sports to the area to introduce folks to up-and-coming sports they might not otherwise be exposed to. 

The destination has brought in disc golf, machete throwing, plenty of golf events, and more. In 2020, Jefferson Parish began a sports counsel that brought in 14 different sports leaders throughout Louisiana. The counsel discusses what new sports and sports clinics they’d like to bring in to the area.

Jefferson Parish has it all. It comes down to convenience and cost; as the largest parish in Louisiana and just miles from New Orleans, it certainly provides both. Whether you’d like to compete in quidditch or basketball, explore land or water activities, visit the vibrance of New Orleans or relax in a quieter town, Jefferson Parish has you covered. 

For more information on Visit Jefferson Parish and their array of facilities, or to reach out with questions, head to their Playeasy profile!

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Brenna Collins, Playeasy Content Creation Manager
Written By: Brenna Collins