Resurrection of The Cannery Brings New Life to Lindale
Hundreds of visitors showed up for this year's Wine Fest at the Cannery in Lindale.
Photo by P.A. Geddie
There’s a big reason why Lindale won County Line Magazine’s “Best Improved Small Town” in the last annual survey — major expansion and renovations in a downtown complex called The Cannery has everyone talking.
This location was once home to a thriving operation that helped supply food to people across the nation.
Just a year after the first post office opened in Lindale in 1874, fledgling canning and fruit packing industries took off when the International-Great Northern Railroad extended its line through the town which by the late 1880s was already gaining fame for its fruit and berry canning industry.
By 1900 the city had a canning factory. In 1905 the town produce continued to be the city’s main source of income and by 1950 the town had gained a reputation for being the “blackberry capital of the world” with tons of berries being canned and shipped each year.
Somewhere along the way though — perhaps as Interstate 20 began to pull business from the downtown area — the cannery operations shut down and the buildings sat empty for a long time.
In recent years the City of Lindale purchased the old cannery property and developers began renovations to turn the area into a restaurant, retail, and residential destination.
Today, The Cannery incorporates its history with a new vision. One old cannery building is now the Picker’s Pavilion at Blackberry Square offering a venue for special events like wine festivals and concerts.
Another group of businesses in the The Cannery includes The Pink Pistol, owned by country music performer Miranda Lambert and her family, and Love and War in Texas, a popular restaurant and music venue.
Tyler Junior College has a campus within The Cannery as well. TJC North provides the surrounding communities with access to general education classes, nursing programs, and the recently launched Veterinary Technician Program.
Still in the building stages are 22 living spaces, including 16 single-bedroom loft apartments and six two-bedroom flats that capture a modern industrial warehouse ambience.
The community-minded concept brings people together in outdoor common areas and puts shopping, dining, and entertainment opportunities within easy walking distance.
Through special events and Love and War in Texas, Lindale organizers are bringing in top Texas music artists like the Tejas Brothers, Aaron Watson, Robert Earl Keen, Charlie Robison, Uncle Lucius, Monte Montgomery, and more.
Besides ongoing entertainment, several special events are planned this fall including Big Texas Fest September 8-10, Countryfest October 14, Pinktoberfest October 20-21, and Pistols and Pearls October 28.
The Lindale Community Theater is also very active in the downtown area with a presentation of The 39 Steps September 22-24 and September 29-October 1. Also at the theater are concerts by Shake, Rattle & Roll October 28 and East Texas Men in Harmony November 11. Go to lindalecommunitytheater.org for tickets.
Other things to do in Lindale include a world class equestrian park, golfing, farmers market, Faulkner Park, and Old Mill Pond Agricultural Museum. Tyler State Park and Tiger Creek Wildlife Refuge are close by as well as hotels located along Interstate 20.