Updated: Sep 23
What is it like living in Celina, Texas? Well, Celina, Tx is like living in a modern day Mayberry. It's like living in a small town that has an energy and a "vibe" that screams MODERN. Yep, that's right, Celina, Texas is a very unique combination of the best parts of our past seasoned with a really amazing flair for the future. How can this be? Read on, I'll tell you.
First of all, when people ask "What is it like living in Celina, Texas?" they are usually perplexed by the bits and pieces they hear from friends or read online such as "Celina, Texas Set For Explosive Growth" at one end of the spectrum followed by "Join Us Friday Night On The Celina Square For Movie Night." One can easily see how the two headlines seem to contradict. But, they actually don't. Celina is EXACTLY that: the place where you can watch a movie on the downtown square on a Friday night and still see a record number of homebuilders scouting out century old farmland for the next big development.
Living In Celina, Texas: The People
Of course the people, the citizens and residents of Celina, TX are what makes this amazing city all that it is. The reality is that most of us were not born and raised here. Personally I got here in 1993 so, over half my life ago. And, as you may have read in this article, Celina has changed, ALOT. It seems that most of us "Celinians" have arrived more recently, many of us within the last 5 years or so. But here's the thing, the SPIRIT of Celina has been alive and well for over 100 years now. It's that same spirit that resonates within all of us. It's the "small town Celina, Texas" thing.
My stepmom was a Celina resident back in the 1950's and she has had lengthy conversations with me about how it was back in those days, basically what it was like living in Celina, Texas back then. And you know what? It's really hasn't changed much. The community has always been something special, something unique -and it's always centered around the goodness of the people who have lived in Celina, TX for generations.
One measure of the goodness of the people who call Celina, Texas home is how many of us still wave at each other as we pass each other on the road. Yep, that's right, a wave, a gesture. It means everything. Imagine if the entire world still cared enough to slow down and acknowledge one another with such a simple gesture. It would be a much better world. Truth is, Celina, Texas still has a lot of this goodness.
Living In Celina, Texas: The Location
Imagine living in Celina, TX back when Preston Rd. was just two lanes and no one knew what existed beyond Plano. There were no real options for dining, no great roads to get you quickly into Dallas and not a whole lot to do. But, what was great, was the fact that Celina was so far out of Dallas that you fully escaped the hassle and stress associated with living in the inner city. So it was a trade off, live in the country but give up some of the conveniences that you get in the city.
Fast forward to today and guess what? Celina is located on the North Dallas Tollway and Preston Road has been widened to handle lots of cars. And, there are TONS of places to eat and shop now -with more on the way! So today you can get the "country life" and the conveniences too. It's great. No, it's BETTER than great.
Some of the restaurants in Celina include Toasted Walnut, Lucy's On The Square, Tender Smokehouse, A Taste of Rome, Papa Gallo's Mexican Restaurant, Bongo Beaux's Cajun, Jimbo's Pizza and many more. We have Summer Moon Coffee and even a Starbucks. Of course there are the usual fast food places like McDonalds, Taco Bell, Sonic, Subway and Dominoes as well. So what is it like living in Celina, Texas? Well there are no shortages of eating places and so many more are on the way!
Living In Celina, Texas: The City Government
One of the things that can make or break a growing city or town in the vision and leadership of its local government. In the case of Celina, Texas, the vision is grand and the leadership is literally ushering in this fantastic vision for the future of Celina. In fact, many people believe that there is a reason new Celina residents and businesses are bypassing Prosper, Texas and coming straight to Celina and that is the city leadership.
I have personally watched the local city government grow from a "one horse town" to a city on the cusp of greatness. It's been super inspiring to watch the growth and most of it is directly attributable to the citizen servants in the Celina city government. And, the services offered by the police and fire departments and everything in between is top notch. Essentially, everything one would expect from a responsible, local government is here.
Something that has interested me for some time is the plans for the future of the City of Celina. For example, there are plans to create an "entertainment district" along the current railroad tracks through downtown. Imagine a park and walk destination where restaurants, live music and more take place. That's what the proposed entertainment district for Celina looks like.
Not only does the City of Celina have a plan for a large "entertainment district" but also for a huge trails system, lots of heritage styled intersections, lots of parks and so much more. It seems like each city learns from the ones that boomed before them, in this case Frisco learned from Plano, and Celina is learning from Frisco. In the end, it makes for a build out in about 2040 that will be something special for the wonderful City of Celina. Quite often people ask "What is it like living in Celina, TX?' to which I like to say, it's amazing and only getting better!
Living In Celina, Texas: The Stores
In a small town like Celina, Texas, one of the most appealing things to most people is the "lack" of jammed up, over-crowded shopping centers. Certainly, I understand that one day we will have large shopping centers and lots of traffic, but for a long while, Celina will be without these life stealers. What I mean is that as of now, you can go to the local Brookshire's Grocery Store to get most everything you need or want as far as food, standard home consumables like paper products, etc. Brookshire's is pretty much a standard grocery store. Mind you, it's no yuppie, hippie, organic chain store, but it gets the job done and most of the employees will know you by name.
Need some hardware? We got the proverbial "Ace Hardware" that you would expect in an awesome small town. The best part? This Celina based Ace Hardware actually has people working there that know their business. Have a plumbing issue? They likely know all about it and everything you'll need to fix it, along with some great, friendly advice. Need some lightbulbs, paint, maybe a heater for the winter? This is the place and the folks who work there make it just perfect.
One thing that you will love about living in many parts of Celina, Texas is the ability to have some animals. No, not just dogs and cats. I mean cows, bulls, horses, goats, pigs and ducks (wait, that's my list of animals!) And, if you DO decide to have some extra hooves around the homestead, then you'll be needing a Tractor Supply Company close by. Yep, we have one and it's literally a land owner's dream come true. Everything from lawn tractors, grass seed and tons of feed and animal care supplies. There is also a fair amount of ranch and farm wear to make you LOOK like a real Celina land owner. It's cool. Do it. You'll thank me later.
Need bulk feed or hay for your animals? We have a store called D and L Feedstore to meet those needs. Essentially, you can go in and grab most any kind of farm animal feed or you can get as many bales of Coastal hay, alfalfa or straw as you need. Oh, and you'll meet some of the friendliest people in Celina!
Of course, Celina, Texas is so much more than just feed stores and such. in fact, if you venture out onto the downtown square, you'll be able to visit more than a few "boutique" shops. One of them, Annie Jack is a small gift and clothing store catering to the women of Celina. Imagine vintage atmosphere but modern clothing and gifts. Yep, that's Annie Jack. There's also Buff City Soaps, Willow House Boutique and a couple of new shopping options called Terramania and Honeysuckle Rose Boutique. Each store offering something that you are going to love.
So, what is it like living in Celina, Texas? Great from so many perspectives.
Living In Celina, Texas: The Restaurants
Celina, Texas is quickly becoming a great place to eat. In fact, Yelp named one of our smokehouses the "second best in the US" recently. The place? It's called Tender Smokehouse and it's one of my very favorite places to eat in Celina. Barbecue, potato salad and fried okra is my choice! Well, chased with a sweet tea, of course.
There is also Mexican food at papa Galleo's, cajun food at Bongo Beaux's and some really tasty options at the Toasted Walnut. Of course, it seems like nearly weekly we hear about new places coming to town like Starbucks Coffee Shop and each time we hear about them, we get excited all over again. It will be interesting to re-read this article one day in the future and compare what exists today with what will be.
Of course, we have fast food places in Celina, Texas as well. Sonic, McDonalds, Taco Bell, Subway and Dominoes Pizza are a few that come to mind. Of course I never eat fast food, so I'm not sure what I know all about these places. Remember, breakfast at McDonals ends at 10:30 through the week and 11 on weekends and Sonic has their breakfast menu all day. Just saying.
Here is an article I wrote regarding my favorite restaurants in Celina, Texas:
Living in Celina, Texas: The Atmosphere
All I can say about this is that you really need to experience it yourself. From the multitude of things going on at the downtown square to the fantastic small town feel and everything in between makes this city absolutely fantastic. Miles and miles of farmland with countless cattle, donkeys and horses, beautiful sunsets, no traffic, -the list goes on and on. Oh, and don't forget that Celina is SUPER rich in pride for our football team! You'll never believe that Friday Night Lights is alive and well, but it is, right here in Celina, Texas.
The sad truth is that one day all of this will be gone. Of course, we hope to hold onto this special little town as long as we can and we would love it if you were to come and join us. Come up on a weekend in the summer and catch a movie or Friday Night Market on the square, or grab some of Punk Carter's special recipe meat loaf at Lucy's On The Square. And, if you are looking for a home, ranch or farm in Celina, I know a great Celina, Texas Realtor that can help you realize your dreams!
Living In Celina, Texas: Conclusion:
What is it like living in Celina, Texas? It's everything you can possibly imagine a small town with a huge future is, and more. Literally the best town in Texas, and I mean that. Come on up and see for yourself! Or, if you want to get a GREAT insiders perspective on Celina, Texas, listen to my podcast called CelinaRadio.com and you will get a REAL idea of this amazing little city!
Helpful information to help answer the question "What is it like living in Celina, Texas?" can be found in the links below:
City of Celina Official Website:
Celina Chamber of Commerce:
Celina, Texas on Wiki: