Plano, Texas was first settled in 1845. Originally named Fillmore
for Millard Fillmore. That name (obviously) was later changed in 1851 when the post office
was granted to the new town.
In 1881 most of the city
was destroyed by a fierce fire. Ironically, there was another
disastrous major fire in 1895 which also destroyed many businesses. Many
early buildings survived and are described in a historical guide available at the chamber
Historic downtown with brick streets has undergone a revitalization
project with brick sidewalks, turn of the century lampposts, and plaza to enhance
specialty shops, boutiques, galleries, and restaurants. With the growth of nearby Dallas, this little city grew from a mere 3,695 residents in 1960 to
a whopping 72,331 in 1980.
Plano is now widely acknowledged as the "Balloon Capital of Texas" with hot-air
balloon races scheduled the last weekend every September. A Large arts and crafts fair is
also held in conjunction with the balloon festival.
It's been more than 100 years since Clinton Haggard moved to Plano
from Kentucky. Today, the Haggard family is still active in farming and has created an
area to bring farm life to the city. There's a farmer's market, arts barn, museum, general
store, farm animals, party pavilion, and restaurant. Seasonal demonstrations held
throughout the year include sheep shearing, horse-shoeing and other events depicting farm
life. Open daily. U.S. 75 at Parker Rd. (exit 30), For information, call (972)424-2254.
Heritage Farmstead Museum (Farrell-Wilson Farmstead)-
Built in 1891, was the center of working farm until 1972. Four-acre
site includes preserved windmill and outbuildings. Listed in National Register of Historic
Places. Guided tours. Open June - August. Tues. - Fri. 10 a.m. - I p.m,; Sat., 10 a.m. 1
p.m.; Sun., 1 - 4 p.m. Sept, - May open Thurs. - Fri. 10 a.m. - 4 p.m.
Sat., 10 a.m. - I p.m.; Sun., 1 - 4 p.m. (Note: Last tour leaves 1
hour before closing time.) 15th St. at Custer Rd. Admission. Call (972)424-7874.
Interurban Railway Station Museum-
Between 1908 and 1948 the Texas Electric Railway ran from Denison to
Waco, linking Dallas to smaller cities. Plano's Interurban Station was completed in 1908.
Building, restored to its original condition, contains memorabilia of railway history.
Taller portion of building housed large transformers that converted AC power generated in
McKinney to the 600 volt DC power used by interurban cars. Outside of museum
is an electric interurban railway car, not open to public.
Open Monday through Friday, 10:00am to 2:00pm, and Saturday, 1:00pm to 5:00pm.
Group tours available. Reservations suggested.
Telephone (direct) (972) 941-2117
The Interurban Railway Station and Museum is located
in Haggard Park, 901 E. 15th St.
Mountasia Fantasy Golf-
A 54 hole miniature golf course takes golfers through caves,
waterfalls, and other obstacles. Can accommodate 500 golfers. 7,000-sq.-ft. clubhouse
includes latest video games available. At 2400 Premier Dr. off U.S. 75 (between Park and
Parker Rd.). Admission. For additional information, call (972)424-9940.
Award-winning park system includes two indoor and one outdoor pools,
21-court tennis center, municipal golf course, outdoor learning center, playground,
playground for handicapped children, and a hike-and-bike trail system 15 miles long
connecting seven park sites.
Many visitors to Dallas
and Fort Worth enjoy a visit to Southfork
Ranch, made famous by the "Dallas" TV series, a number one hit in 96 countries where shown.
Visitors can tour this famous mansion and grounds, and even see: the gun that shot J. R.,
Lucy's wedding dress, and other memorabilia from the show in "Dallas Legends:
Fact to Fantasy" museum which is completely dedicated to the history of the
TV show. There's also "Lincoln's and Longhorns" Western store featuring the
original Lincoln Continental J.R. Ewing drove in the show. Open daily, From U.S. 75 North,
take exit 30 and drive east on F.M. 2514/Parker Rd. about six miles; turn right on F.M.
2551 (Hogge Rd.) and there's the ranch. (972)442-7800. Admission.