Best Cities for Outdoor Basketball: Which Virginia City Tops List?

Fact Checked by Jim Tomlin

A who’s who of basketball stars have made their way through the neighborhood courts of the Tidewater region of Virginia. Allen Iverson, James McAdoo and current Charlotte Hornets big man Mark Williams are just some of the stars the region has produced. That’s one reason hoops wagers are so popular at Virginia sportsbooks.

As Americans ease into summer, many basketball players are looking for places to get out and get some shots up. BetVirginia used the Trust For Public Land 2023 City Park Facts data on public parks in the nation’s 100 largest cities. We then ranked those cities based on how many total basketball hoops those parks offer. After sifting through this data, we ranked those cities by total basketball hoops (specific to public parks) per 10,000 residents.

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Best Cities To Play Basketball Outside In America

Rank City Hoops Per 10,000 Residents (2023)
1 Norfolk, Virginia 17.6
2 Laredo, Texas 9.8
3 Baton Rouge, Louisiana 9.5
4 Madison, Wisconsin 9.2
5 Henderson, Nevada 8.7
6 Cincinnati, Ohio 8.6
7 St. Paul, Minnesota 7.8
8 Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 7.4
T9 Cleveland, Ohio 7.3
T9 Minneapolis, Minnesota 7.3
11 Washington, DC 6.9
12 Omaha, Nebraska 6.8
13 Richmond, Virginia 6.5
14 Jacksonville, Florida 6.4
15 North Las Vegas, Nevada 6.2

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Norfolk Stands Tall Nationally

One Virginia city is well ahead of the hoops-rich competition nationwide. Norfolk leads the country by a significant margin with 17.6 outdoor hoops per 10,000 residents.

The city of Norfolk dwarves the next closest metropolitan area in America when it comes to outdoor basketball hoops per capita, with the Tidewater locale having nearly double the next closest city (Laredo, Texas, at 9.8).

Rounding out the top five when it came to the most outdoor hoops per capita were Baton Rouge, Louisiana (9.5 hoops per 10K residents), Madison, Wisconsin (9.2) and Henderson, Nevada (8.7).

Cincinnati, Ohio (8.6), St. Paul, Minnesota (7.8), Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania (7.4), Cleveland, Ohio (7.3) and Minneapolis, Minnesota (7.3) were the other areas in the top 10 in America. Check out the Virginia Cavaliers team of the last decade for more basketball coverage.

D.C., Richmond Also Represented

Another Virginia city, Richmond, finished 13th nationally with 6.5 hoops per 10,000 residents, while neighboring Washington D.C. was 11th at 6.9.

Omaha, Nebraska (6.8) was No. 12. Jacksonville, Florida (6.4) and North Las Vegas, Nevada (6.2) rounded out the top 15 on our list.

Still, none of those mainstays of Americana hold a candle to the hoops hotbed of Norfolk, making the many professional basketball players that came from the Tidewater proud of the region they call home.

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USA Today photo by Caitlyn Jordan/News Sentinel


Christopher Boan

Christopher Boan has been covering sports and sports betting for more than seven years, including stops at, the Tucson Weekly and the Green Valley News.

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