In the old days, people mostly went “into town” on the weekends. Well, today downtown Plano has grown up and people now visit seven days a week. Grab your horseless carriage and drive over to the intersection of 15th Street and Central Expressway. This is now deemed the “Gateway to Downtown Plano.” The area east has a new twinkle in its eye and is even attracting folks from as far away as Dallas, McKinney AND Japan–imagine that! Parking is aplenty in downtown, and the best way to explore is to park and walk. As a lifelong Texan and a Plano gal for the past 34 years, allow me to share my favorite stops with you on a little mosey through downtown Plano.
First, find out where Downtown Plano got its roots. Visit the Texas Historical Marker outside event1013 for a little education on its previous life as the Mathews General Store. Or the marker at the AR Schell building, which was restored in 1936 to its previous Art Deco appearance.
Like craft beers on tap? Name a Texan that doesn’t. Take just a few steps to Vickery Park and experience their many brews while enjoying a varied menu, local artwork, darts and shuffleboard. Their Brisket Sandwich is legendary!
Shop seven days a week–yep, Sunday too!–at Shinola and the soon-to-open Filson boutique next door. Find the time to check out quality American-made watches (sorry, the pun made me do it!), as well as fine leather goods and bicycles made in Detroit.
Cross the street and fly into The Feathered Nest, a bohemian paradise offering home décor, gifts, candles, eclectic clothing and more. Owner Julie Rejaee displays pieces from her own line Milly Rose, an updated take on vintage apparel. Guys, take note of your significant other’s favorites and your future gift problems are solved. (“It happens frequently!” says Julie.)
Get your art on. Jorg from Jorg’s Café Vienna, Jeff from Lockhart Smoke House and Ken from Supreme Dream Photography are showing their artwork, along with other local notables, at the newly opened Ten 20 Gallery. You might catch some celebrities–word has it, Willie likes to hang out near the Ten 20 window.
Exploring and shopping can leave you a bit tuckered. Stop into the comfort food zone of Angela’s at the Crosswalk for a little sugar rush to carry you along. Yes, there is actually a real Angela and she makes mouthwatering pies and pastries in the store. For a topper, try some of Henry’s Homemade (in Plano) Ice Cream. That should hit the spot for now!
Since most men hate this shopping ritual, if you have one with you, now is to time consider letting him “mosey” (Texan for a slow walk) over to the Lone Star State Cigar Co. on 14th street. There he can find cigars from Texas brands and around the world in a massive walk-in humidor. Smoking indoors is encouraged in their smoking lounge.
Now you get to venture into La Foofaraw, an interior design and gift store. This two-storied place is packed with unique items from around the world and from our little corner of heaven, including candles made in Tyler. Michael, the interior design extraordinaire, can also create beautiful decor for weddings and special events. The upstairs is “the frosting on the cake” as we say in Texas! Now re-unite with your partner and wander on…
Bet you’ve never seen whips and chains made into a chandelier! Well, there is a first time for everything. Sashay over to Urban Crust brick oven pizza restaurant and cast your eyes upon the ceiling. Yes, indeed! The chandelier was made by Chef Salvatore Gisellu and his wife in their garage before the restaurant even opened. Walk upstairs to their 32 Degree Rooftop Bar, where the bar top is actually a chilly 32 degrees. Placing your beverage there ensures it won’t get hot while you tell those long-winded stories Texans are famous for!
Folks, this is just a sample of what you can find in Historic Downtown Plano. So take your time, stroll on down the street, experience and explore. New shops are popping up everywhere. With the addition of the soon-to-open McCall Plaza outdoor stage, downtown Plano is surely the place to be.Downtown Plano Website >