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Historic, charming arts and crafts style homes.
Quaint shops inviting you to come in and splurge.
Antiques, toys, cute dresses, good food . . oh my!
Monogrammed crowds anxiously waiting outside of Spoons to sit down to a delicious homemade meal.
Second Saturdays, festivals and markets, whats’ a Texan to do?
If you’ve visited or live here, you know that Downtown McKinney has the charm of Gilmore Girls mixed in with the rich history of Texas.
Its adorable, quaint and a great place to explore 365 days per year.
Downtown McKinney has gone through so many changes over the decades.
But today, McKinney is stronger than ever and the downtown area is bursting with so much to do, new restaurants and new gems to discover. I can hardly keep on top of updating this article.
Downtown McKinney is extremely family friendly and additionally the most awesome place to take out-of-town visitors (all of our relatives have been here with us and love supporting the local businesses here) . . and Brian, my husband is always up for a beer at Cadillac Pizza and a slice of coconut pie at Emporium. The way to a man’s ❤️, am I right?
In running this website and online community, this is one of the top cities that my inbox gets flooded with questions about what to do, where to stay, best places to eat, drink coffee and tour. So I am trying to keep this page updated (finally) to direct folks over here to help with their questions. Or tell them why they need to jump on a plane, land at DFW or DAL and take that ride share right up to McKinney.
Let’s Deep Dive into Downtown McKinney
If you check with the City of McKinney, you’ll find a list of all of their annual events like Oktoberfest (don’t miss the weiner dog races!) or the lovely Home for the Holidays event starting on Black Friday. Oh, and don’t forget the McKinney Annual Tour of Homes.
Those holiday festivals will totally get you into the spirit!!
Keep in mind, that even if you don’t hit up the town for an event, there is always something to do, eat, see, explore or drink!
So here are the restaurants, parks (yes parks!), cafes, shops, services, museums, lovely lodging, antiques and oh so much more that have made their way into my heart! Just remember, if you get tired or the weather gets too hot, McKinney offers this free shuttle called DASH!! So fun!
The Down & Dirty Guide to Downtown McKinney Texas
If you’ve been here, you know this place gets uber busy! So I love that they have added on a new deck to enjoy my pizza and delish salads.
Right next to Sugar Bacon, I adore the Brisket salad. Give it a try!
I LOVE this place! And so does about all of Texas! The first time I ate here, I was so hungry, I ordered the all-you-can-eat. That was crazy since one plate could have fed an army. Not only do I love the food but I love that their premium brisket is free of antibiotics and hormones.
With patio season upon us, they’ve got the largest one on the Square. Cannot wait to hang out, have a beer and chill with friends.
Top Dog Tacos
I love this cute place around the corner from the Pantry. See my article about it HERE.
This restaurant has received an enormous amount of attention both locally as well as nationally. And its all well-deserved. In case you missed it, here’s the “Inspiring America” feature on Hugs Cafe that ran on NBC Nightly News with Lester Holt.
They need your help to continue to positively impact the lives of adults with special needs in the community. So pass it on =)
This is a funky, art-filled chain pizzeria featuring craft beer, calzones & creative stone-baked pizzas.
If you’re in the mood for a wedge salad, a ribeye with a baked potato, then this is the place to be. Especially during patio season.
Great burgers, wine list, beer list and desserts! Yes, save room for dessert.
El Juarez Mexican Restaurant
This family-owned business has been serving amazing food since 1988!
The Celt Pub
Live music, traditional pub food and great beer. They have room for ya downstairs, upstairs and even out on their patio.
The Pub McKinney
This restaurant firmly stands behind the quote –
“Too much of anything is bad, but too much good whiskey is barely enough” -Mark Twain
*Note: they have a whiskey menu that any fan would be a huge fan of (plus a fabulous menu and cozy seating). You’ve got to add this to your list of must-visit places!
This eatery serving New American eats with a Southern flair, plus cocktails, beer & wine in comfy digs.
Chicken spaghetti, pecan pie and sweet tea. Yes please!
Cookie’s Mexican Food
Down to earth good Mexican food at an even better price, you’ll loveeee this one.
Frios Gourmet Pops
Local Yocal BBQ & Grill
Long-running market providing ham, steak & smoked meats, such as brisket, ribs & turkey since 1954.
The Stalk Market
This Market is all about FLOWERS. Beautiful flowers! The Stalk Market is a wedding & event florist specializing in weddings and events, and they even have floral subscription boxes.
Chestnut Square Farmer’s Market
Every Saturday from early spring to mid-October, 8 a.m. to noon, visitors to the Farmers Market at Chestnut Square in downtown McKinney will find:
- Artisan cheeses, including goat cheese and mozzarella
- Sprout stands
- Free range eggs
- Local farm-fresh produce
- Local honey
- Laundry soap
- Local organic produce, including fruits, vegetables and herbs
- Local whole grain breads
- Native Texas plants and flowers
- Beef jerky
- Natural grass-fed meats, including beef, lamb, pork and poultry
- Pickled beets and asparagus
- Texas salsa (heya Bernard Gameday Foods!)
McKinney Wine Merchant
Grab a McKinney wine label here
Each cafe in downtown McKinney has their own vibe and offers something completely different. More of a reason to test every single one out to find out which one is your favorite!
filter(ed) Craft Coffee House
My fave coffee cafe to tell others about! If you are a coffee connoisseur, this place will be your jam. The owner is soooo lovely and passionate about her customers.
(hint: she has both cafe customers and music customers)
McKinney Sweet Spot
Who doesn’t love a cafe with pink doors and lots of sweet treats?
(this one has just closed I believe and will need to double check on what’s coming in next)
I love sitting in the chairs in the window or heading upstairs to the cozy loft. This is a great place to get cozy with a cup of tea and a scone. Yummmmm!
One day, perhaps downtown McKinney will be just like Fredericksburg where we can roam the streets with our wine and beer.
How fun would that be??
And, I mean, what could wrong? 😉
Until you can stroll with wine, have a seat at one of these fabulous places ⬇️
Such a fun place to come with a girlfriend and sit in the cozy booth inside or a large group of friends and hand out on their deck. Its right on the corner to see all the action.
Lone Star Wine Cellars
This cute wine stop is tucked away behind Pumps Boutique.
It feels like a secret tunnel to all things wine. Pull up a bar stool and make new friends.
The Red Gate Inn
Located just a half-mile due north of McKinney’s historic downtown square, this lovely inn offers guests two cozy rooms.
The 1912 Georgian Revival was newly restored in 2017, and opened as McKinney’s newest Bed & Breakfast just last year.
McKinney Bed & Breakfast
I just love following this B&B on social media, they have such endearing stories.
The Southern Chic Retreat
I talk about this Craftcation retreat over HERE where I spent the weekend.
The Grand Hotel
McKinney Oktoberfest (check out the wiener dog races, adorable!)
Scare on the Square
Home for the Holidays
Krewe of Barkus
Arts in Bloom
Held in the Spring
Bike the Bricks
This event is in May (has now been removed from the annual calendar as of 2019)
Red White and Boom Parade
But of course, July 4th!
(check with the city of McKinney for the exact festival dates)
This shop is filled with apparel, artisan handcrafted jewelry, furniture & home decor. What I love is being able to walk in and find an assortment of fun and pretty items.
Glitzy Girlz Boutique
Antique Company Mall
This 2-story shop is filled to the brim with unique finds and antiques. I never miss walking through this shop when visiting the Square.
One of the newer shops on the Square and it is full of the cutest clothes for women (and the prices are surprisingly good!). Make sure to look for it between Cadillac Pizza and Homeology.
Jasper & Petals
Kick Up your Heels
Nan Lee Jewelry
Yes, a brand new family member popped in for a wedding band here. Excited!
Collin County Feed & Seed
Old Red Lumberyard Vintage Market
The Old Red Lumberyard is a monthly (3rd weekend) antique and vintage sale held near the old downtown McKinney square. You can find unique one of a kind items from furniture, architectural, books, signage, shabby chic, primitives, linens and quilts, etc. You’ll need to cross over McDonald St to make your way over
Mila Delfin Jewelry
Dumpster Diva Designs
They repurpose and custom build furniture and home decor right here in Downtown McKinney.
351 E Louisiana Street
McKinney, Texas 75069
Birds & Words
Mom and Popcorn
The place where you’ll be a kid in a candy shop! You won’t leave this shop without buying something. And if you have kids, you’ll walk away with an armful of sweets. Have fun!
Barrons Estate Jewelers
I’m fascinated with this store on the corner that is filled with the most fabulous antiques like guitars, mandolins, jewelry, antique coke vending machines, clocks and lots and lots of other treasures. Don’t miss it!
We just took home the sweetest antique salt and pepper shaker set in the shape of ice cones.
My Favorite Room
The Groovy Coop
This store is fun and funky with old and new treasures that you will absolutely adore!
Known as the community yarn destination and they now have their own dedicated location.
Order 66 Toys
Offbeat retailer featuring a range of toys, action figures, vintage collectibles, books & movies.
This gorgeous shop is located next to The Pantry and we always visit after a yummy lunch. You’ll be blown away by the vintage pieces available for purchase. And one more thing, the shop owner also provides estate liquidation for a family home.
Bay Willow Design
This is the store that pulls you in with their cute tees and clothing in the window and at the entrance to their store.
Cynthia Elliot Boutique
(a newbie to the Square)
Kiss & Makeup Boutique
The Little Red Hen
This French boutique is below Barron’s and I just love the aesthetic and totally unique pieces that the owner curates.
Petals & Vine
The motto as Orisons boutique is “We dress Texas” If you live here or visiting here, stop by this place as its packed with the coolest clothes, boots, necklaces, earrings (love their jewelry here) and a ton more.
Me & Mrs Jones Boutique
This boutique is next door to the Celt and one of my faves, they have the cutest dresses here! The only problem? I would like to buy every single one of them!! Seriously! Its packed with color and fun!
Tom Lavy’s Stonewood Creators
This artisan shop hand crafts custom items for home and garden, specializing in rustic Texas accents.
LAST Art Gallery
Their mission is to showcase works from talented area artists ranging from the traditional to the eclectic. (its near Homeology)
Happiness is Quilting
This spot on the Square is resource for quilting fabrics, notions & accessories also offers a full calendar of classes.
Just off the Square (and a perfect stop as you walk over to Hutchins BBQ), you’ll find this colorful shop.
Fair and Square Imports
This shop is HUGE and has a little bit of everything, from Yeti items to paints to cute tops its always fun to explore. And without a doubt, my niece Keely, will always find treasures that are perfect for hanging out with friends. I even had to put it on my line of Downtown McKinney merch (click the pic)
Do you know where this spot is in Doozie’s? ⬇️
Doug & Lynda’s Ski Shop
As adventurers, we love supporting this place! Plus, its all about your winter needs, which means when they open back up again, the Texas heat is fading away!! Yippee!!
Harry’s Boot & Shoe Repair
This is the place to take your boots that need a little makeover
Loco Cowpoke Salsa Shop
Honey Pecan Butter, Sweet Potato Butter or Ghost Chile Salsa anyone? This is a great place to get gifts for yourself or visitors because it just screams of Texas + all the yumminess we offer. If you pop in, you’ll get to sample almost everything!
Wire We Here
Easy Rider Trikes
Orisons Art & Framing
This antique shop is packed to the rafters, offering beautiful pieces from Belgium, France and England to name a few. These are quality, unique pieces offered at amazing prices!
We spend a lot of time on the trails, from Erwin Park to Oak Cliff Nature Preserve to RCP.
We love having a community shop that is such a resource and help to our biking needs.
Giggle Brush Designs
A sweet shop for your little one or a gift for a friend. Such a unique baby and children’s boutique . . oh, and they even have bedding (if your not in Texas, they’ll send you a swatch to help you out).
House of Hargrove-McKinney
One can never have enough shabby chic, am I right?
A Number of Things
Kick Up Your Heels
I love shopping here for my niece who is a ballerina, dancer and cheerleader.
Don’t skip over this amazing antique shop across from The Pantry. It’s 2-stories with a treasure in every nook and cranny.
Texas Monkey Business
Hoss & Lulu
The McKinney Shop
A Twist of Lime
You’ve probably taken a rest on their lime bench at some point =)
Carpe Diem Comics
Kitchenwares on the Square
Spice & Tea Merchants
Mayfield & Company Salon & Spa
Jeremy’s Barber Shop
Primp Salon Boutique
Pavitra Organic Day Spa
Palace Barber Shop
I’ll be honest. My husband likes downtown McKinney but he doesn’t wake up with a strong desire to smell harvest spice candles again and again at the cute shops like I do.
However, he does wake up with a desire for BEER.
Always and forever.
Thankfully, not only are their some amazing pub options on the Square, there are also 2 kickass breweries within a stone’s throw of the Square that will satisfy his craving for barley and hops.
Every Saturday, you can attend a fun and funny tour with lots of Bavarian style beer.
Texas Beer Lover’s Tee
The Comedy Arena
McKinney Art House
Eclair Bistro has jazz on Saturday night
Food Walks of Texas
The Board Bar
Walls of Clay
We Ate Well Food Tours
Made of Sugar & Spice
McKinney Performing Arts Center ( a great place to see our very own Laura Bartlett)
Wild Brush Studio
McKinney Trolley Tours
Chestnut Historical Village Tours
We ❤️ the Downtown McKinney tours!
301 W Standifer St, McKinney, TX 75069
Dr. Glenn Mitchell Memorial Park
300 W Louisiana St, McKinney, TX 75069
A teeny park at the onset of the Square – I first noticed it during the Krewe of Barkus festival as the start to the parade and all of the awesome booths.
Roy & Helen Memorial Hall & Library101 E Hunt St McKinney, TX 75069
Although not a park, I had to pop in this adorable library just off the Square. A free resource of books, events and learning programs for the community.
Collin County History Museum
300 E Virginia St, McKinney, TX 75069
Also, try the City of McKinney website as well. Their site provides insight as to where to park, how long you can park in certain areas, construction zones as well as DASH.
If I missed something here, please kindly email me (its just 2 of us keeping up this website) at [email protected] and we will do our best to keep it updated.
Come on over to Facebook and tell us what you love about Downtown McKinney! Everyone has a favorite spot or a favorite way to spend their day.
And be sure to ping Brian and I as we are typically in Downtown McKinney for every festival and some of our weekends too, we’d love to run into you and meet other people that love this town =)
P.S. If you LOVE downtown McKinney, then you might just love this fun collection HERE
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