Longview is a city spread between Harrison County and Gregg County in Texas. This city is considered to be the commercial hub for the Longview Metropolitan Statistical Area and is one of its principle cities. With a population of approximately 77,000 people, Longview has a majority population led by Whites, Hispanics, Native Americans, African Americans, Pacific Islanders and Asians respectively.
The Longview sports scene is quite different and unusual. Apart from the regular collegiate sports of football, volleyball, Baseball, golf, softball, soccer and other varsity games, they host a number of annual events that range from boat races, balloon races, motorcycle rallies, athletic events. All these events take place through the year and celebrate some facet of sports combined with their culture.
From the month of January the East Texas Boat, RV and Camping Expo takes place. This three day event is held on the last week of January every year. The foundation of the event was laid by way of the owners of Longview Marines, Gene Brady and Dale Clark and it has been active since 1982. This expo brings RVs, yachts, boats and motorcycles, ATVs from all of across East Texas under one roof drawing almost over 10,000 attendees each year.
Another major attraction in this region would be the Annual Memorial Day Motorcycle rally. This rally brings individual bikers and motorcycle riders and such clubs from all over Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas and Louisiana. This event began in 2006 and has been an important attraction in this region. The big event includes numerous bike games, a bikers show, music and parades and the big attraction called the Teresi Dyno-Drag. During this interactive event, bikers test their abilities in racing to see how fast they could really go in a quarter mile stretch.
Probably the most exciting festivals that occur in Longview is the Alley Fest which is held at the start of summer. This fest began in 1978 and hosts an art show, a music festival, a food contest as well as a marathon run that is a 1 mile, 5K and 10K course. The latest introduction to the fest is the Kids Marathon run where children between 5 to 12 take part in a 25.2 miles run.
The most popular among every one of these is the Great Texas Balloon race which is held in the month of July each year at the East Texas Regional Airport. This event is considered as the “longest running hot-air balloon race in Texas”. This race began in 1978 during the launch of the Longview Mall as a giant celebration. It continued thereafter and has evolved into a competitive event of world class standards. This event is said to attract world-class hot air balloon pilots from all across the world and consists of balloon fights and balloon glows. An added attraction of this event is to observe how these balloons get inflated and operated. It is an event which is held in association with the North American Balloon Association and invites eighty special sport balloons.
The Longview News Journal is the major newspaper publication in this area and goes back to 187. This publication carries all of the local news, sports and community information.