Welcome to our Spotlight Series where we will be sharing something FAB about cities in our great D.FW…starting from A-Z.
Third Stop: ALLEN, TEXAS
The original township of Allen was laid out according to the Houston and Texas Central Railroad (H&TC), constructed in 1872. In 1918, the H&TC built a combination freight/passenger depot in the Allen Central Business District. The first train robbery in Texas took place in Allen on February 22, 1878, when Sam Bass and his associates pillaged the train. Today’s Allen Heritage Center and Museum is a replica of that original depot. It is the home of the Allen Heritage Guild whose mission is to ensure tomorrow’s heritage by recording past and current milestones for the city. The City of Allen incorporated in 1953 and has experienced many growth spurts over the last 60 years bringing the population from as low as 400 to its current inhabitants of close to 86,000.
Today, there are so many reasons to love Allen. You can shop at the Allen Premium Outlets, catch a concert or sporting event at the Allen Event Center, shop or eat at Watters Creek, have the kids splash around at Celebration Park or visit Top Golf for a fun day with friends and family.
The following are some of Allen’s most notable residents!
BURTON GILLIAM- Best known for his role in “Blazing Saddles,” Gilliam retired to Allen in 2001. He has appeared in more than 80 films and television shows and occasionally works with Allen City Television.
CARLY PATTERSON-The 2004 Olympic all-around champion and a member of the USA Gymnastics Hall of Fame, Patterson moved to Allen while still training for the Olympics. Allen hosted a citywide parade in her honor after she won the gold medal. Now an aspiring singer, she has performed at various events within and around Allen.
AMANDA DUNBAR-One of the most internationally known young artists of today, Dunbar moved to Allen with her family when she was only 12. Dunbar was the youngest woman to be honored with induction into the Texas Woman’s Hall of Fame. Dunbar painted Allen’s “Old Stone Dam,” which can be viewed in the Allen City Hall rotunda.
JIM PARRACK-Best known for his role as Hoyt Fortenberry in the HBO series “True Blood,” Parrack grew up in Allen. He also appeared in the film “Battle: Los Angeles” and has had numerous guest appearances on network television shows, including “Grey’s Anatomy,” “ER” and “Criminal Minds.”
MATT BARR-Born in Allen, Barr is best known for his roles in television shows such as “Commander in Chief,” “One Tree Hill” and “Harper’s Island.” He currently has a recurring role in the CWs “Hellcats.”
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