Texas Travel

Dublin Keeps Irish Eyes Smiling

By Kristy Alpert 3.7.16

They’re more than 4,500 miles apart, but it’s fitting that Dublin, Texas, shares a name with the capital of Ireland.

After all, the iconic small town in central Texas is the official Irish capital of Texas, as designated by Gov. Rick Perry in 2005. Despite its petite size (population 3,696), every year Dublin hosts a St. Patrick’s Day celebration as lively as anything Irish and as grand as anything Texan. This year’s celebration runs from March 10 to 13, and features a parade, numerous shows and events (like the crowning of Miss Dublin!), live music, food vendors, an Irish costume contest, and more.

But beyond its Irish roots, Dublin is a hub for history, and offers elegantly restored Victorian homes lining the streets leading to some amazing museums, including the Rodeo Heritage Museum and the world’s only Ben Hogan Museum, honoring the legendary golfer who lived there as a child. You can explore a 19th century grist mill and log cabin at the Wright Historical Park.

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Dublin is also home to the original Dr Pepper bottling plant, called Dublin Bottling Works, which opened its doors in 1891 to sell the first bottled version of Wade Morrison’s Old Corner Drug Store’s signature concoction, Dr Pepper. For many years, the plant was the only place in the U.S. making Dr Pepper with pure cane sugar. Although Dublin Bottling Works no longer produces the soft drink, it still makes a variety of pure cane-sugar sodas just like the company’s founders did more than 120 years ago.

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Dr Pepper fans flocking to Dublin need only head to Old Doc’s Soda Shop for a frosty handmade soda, prepared the old-fashioned way, before taking a selfie in front of the Corner Lot fountain where “Pretty Peggy Pepper” still swings on the famous Dr Pepper billboard in the distance.

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