Clay Shelburn takes the stage at Eight11 on Main Street in downtown Frisco.

Clay Shelburn takes the stage at Eight11 on Main Street in downtown Frisco.

Louis DeLuca/Staff Photographer
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If you’re driving in the area around Frisco’s Toyota Stadium, it’s hard to miss the two cultural hot spots along Main Street: downtown Frisco and Frisco Square. The areas are two sides of the same coin. The old downtown is lined with historic buildings, a gazebo and the city's trademark red and white water tower. With a mix of history and hometown atmosphere, evenings there are full of residents populating the shops and restaurants, giving life to an old place. On the flip side, the square is a bright, bustling intersection of night life and new business. 

Frisco's profile has risen dramatically with the addition of Dallas Cowboys headquarters The Star, and Main Street has experienced a lot of recent growth, meaning there are many stops, new and old, where visitors can shop, eat and be together. Of course, we can't list them all, so here are eight intriguing places to kick off your exploration.

Patrick Casey, center, performs at Stan's.

Patrick Casey, center, performs at Stan's.

Louis DeLuca/Staff Photographer

Catch some live music at Stan’s Main Street

When you walk into the back patio of the grill and bar, the first thing you see are the bold red letters along the back fence: “STANS HAPPENS.”  Stan's features a revolving door of live musicians and Wednesday trivia nights, along with a varied menu of burgers, sandwiches and seafood. With its blue-rock entryway and colorful aesthetic, Stan’s offers an upbeat environment for an evening.

7210 Main St. stansmainstreet.com.

Stephanie Robbins, left, gets a smile from her son Judah as her mother Juleann Cruz watches as they enjoy the evening at the Rail Yard.

Stephanie Robbins, left, gets a smile from her son Judah as her mother Juleann Cruz watches as they enjoy the evening at the Rail Yard.

Louis DeLuca/Staff Photographer

Bounce between food trucks at the Frisco Rail Yard

The Rail Yard is one of Frisco’s more unusual lunch and dinner joints, offering an expansive, railroad-themed, outdoor seating area surrounded by a rotating schedule of food trucks that offer everything from burgers to empanadas to edible cookie dough. The yard has live music Thursdays through Sundays, and provides a variety of food and drinks well into the night.

9040 First St. friscorailyard.com.

Poparella's gourmet popcorn and treats make for a tasty stop in downtown Frisco.

Poparella's gourmet popcorn and treats make for a tasty stop in downtown Frisco.

Ryan Michalesko/Staff Photographer

Taste some poppin’ flavors at Poparella’s

The gourmet popcorn and candy store at Frisco Square is a one-stop shop for any flavor you might crave. The popcorn comes in more than 50 flavors, including everything from dill pickle to cinnamon toast to New York cheesecake. The shop also serves  homemade fudge, some made with Oreos, Snickers or Butterfingers, and an assortment of frosted nuts. The family-run business is only in Frisco, and worth stopping by.

8873 Coleman Blvd. poparellas.com.

Collin Mizell shows off a coffee with a logo printed on frothed milk at Nerdvana Coffee. Visitors can use the Ripples app to print their own photos.

Collin Mizell shows off a coffee with a logo printed on frothed milk at Nerdvana Coffee. Visitors can use the Ripples app to print their own photos.

Ryan Michalesko/Staff Photographer

Get competitive over coffee at Nerdvana

Nerdvana Frisco has two parts: a coffee shop and a restaurant and bar. Nerdvana Coffee is a nerd paradise, a merger of a hipster coffee shop and a weirdly trendy board game tournament. The bright store serves up coffee, tea, juice and light bites along with board and card games. (Fun tip: Try the Ripples app to upload a photo or other image to be printed on a froth-topped coffee drink.) Tables are often filled with customers who are playing Dungeons & Dragons or Doctor Who Monopoly using cards and boards from the shop's lending library. Next door, Nerdvana Spirits is more upscale and more digital. The restaurant and bar’s walls are lined with screens and video-game consoles, which customers can play over dinner, drinks and dessert. 

5757 Main St. nerdvanafrisco.com.

Summer Moon is a laid-back coffee spot.

Summer Moon is a laid-back coffee spot.

Ryan Michalesko/Staff Photographer

Get a quieter scene at Summer Moon

If you’re in the mood for a quieter coffee scene, then Summer Moon is the place for you. The Frisco shop is the Austin coffee chain’s only D-FW location, and a popular stop among locals. The coffee is hand-roasted over a wood-burning stove, and the shop itself has a lot of seating. Whether you’re meeting a Bumble date or writing your screenplay, it’s a casual place to enjoy great coffee.

6943 Main St. woodfiredcoffee.com/frisco.

Clay Shelburn performs in the backyard of homey wine bar Eight11 Place.

Clay Shelburn performs in the backyard of homey wine bar Eight11 Place.

Louis DeLuca/Staff Photographer

Step into a hipper atmosphere at Eight11 Place

A picket fence encircles the backyard of this homey wine bar, surrounding a long serving table, a series of picnic tables and small stage for live music. The bar serves a lot of lighter food, from artisan style pizzas to paninis, along with a wide selection of beer, wine and cocktails. The trendy stop celebrated its first anniversary (on Aug. 11, appropriately), and is a great place for big events or a night out.

7080 Main St. eight11place.com.

Manny's Tex-Mex Grill in downtown Frisco features quirky signs and colorful decorations.

Manny's Tex-Mex Grill in downtown Frisco features quirky signs and colorful decorations.

Ryan Michalesko/Staff Photographer

Swing by a local favorite, Manny’s Tex-Mex Grill

The Mexican restaurant is an explosion of color from the inside out. The vibrant decorations draw from Tex-Mex culture, an artsy explosion of guitars, stars and cacti. The menu features classic Tex-Mex food, including some seafood options, and the bar is expansive. The venue hosts live music every Friday and Saturday and is a fun place to shake up your usual dining-out experience.

6705 Main St. eatatmannys.com.

Guests dine at The Heritage Table in downtown Frisco.

Guests dine at The Heritage Table in downtown Frisco.

Ryan Michalesko/Staff Photographer

Feel at home at the Heritage Table

The second you walk up to the Heritage Table, you feel at home. The converted 1917 Victorian house looks like it belongs to Southern grandparents at the turn of the 20th century. Its front porch is deep and wide, with two porch swings framing the entryway and outdoor seating winding along the side of the house. Inside, tables replace the home's usual furniture. The restaurant is open from breakfast to dinner, and it's a comfortable place to spend any meal.

7110 Main St. theheritagetable.com.

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