“If My Guitar Could Sing.” Now that’s a cool name of a song. And it exists. Look up Colby Acuff. Great singer-songwriter type. You’ll love his powerful voice. And that’s the thing about singer-songwriters: they move us. They move us with their stories and guitars, and the truly obsessed ones always leave their mark.

Stroll into Jimmy Wallace Guitars in downtown Garland and you’re bound to hear from (or about) all sorts of folks who left their mark and with which guitar. That, of course, brings me back to my first paragraph regarding the guitars themselves—if a guitar could sing. Take, for instance, the 1959 Les Paul Sunburst that Jimmy Wallace owns (valued at $375,000), and often lets his friends and patrons hold. “Fun, but a little scary,” one friend told me about the experience. We bet that guitar has songs to sing.

Photo courtesy of City of Garland

Jimmy Wallace has said he wants his place to be the kind of place where you don’t just admire something, “put away in a case.” He says he wants his store “to be the kind of place where you can see and touch a guitar that’s worth a quarter-million dollars…or just come in for some new guitar strings. You don’t have to have tens of thousands of dollars to shop here.”

Jimmy Wallace’s mark is in his vision, which he says is, “for the store to be a place where a kid who loves guitar can come in here, play a classic guitar like the Les Paul, touch it, take a picture with it, and be inspired to keep playing.”

Jimmy Wallace Guitars may be turning into a staple of downtown Garland. However, Jimmy himself is anything but. Like the legend, Johnny Cash, Jimmy Wallace has been everywhere. He’s played with legends like Lynyrd Skynyrd, Willie Nelson, Gregg Allman, and more. Heck, he even has a Les Paul named after him. But Garland is a place where Jimmy made his vision come alive.

Photo courtesy of City of Garland

Now, if a guitar could sing, then surely a city could sing. And if Garland could sing, it would surely sing about inspiration and vision. That’s because Garland is a community built for making dreams come true, where a rich mixture of people and experiences foster entrepreneurialism in creativity. But don’t let that overwhelm you—it’s OK, if you’re still defining your dream. Garland is a community for that, too.

Maybe you need a totem to guide your way. In Garland you’ll find all sorts of best kept secret type shops known to procure a totem or two. Funky jewelry, Stetson cowboy hats, vintage clothes and goods, unique gifts, and inspiration you won’t find anywhere else. The heart of downtown Garland possesses many nostalgic shops around every corner feel, but not just generic shops. Garland shops demand to be discovered and rediscovered. The kind of stores that ignite that idyllic shopping experience, that invoke quietly paced lingering or cautions you to carefully explore every nook and cranny of the store, just to find that one thing placed seemingly just for you.

Photo courtesy of City of Garland

If Garland could sing, it would also sing about discovery.

And after discovering your treasures, you’re sure to have worked up an appetite. Dine at one of the many scrumptious places to eat downtown. From sweet and savory BBQ to juicy seafood and fresh deli to sizzling Mexican food, along with options for craft beer lovers and gourmet coffee gurus, there’s plenty of tasty options to choose from.

Photo courtesy of City of Garland

So, if it’s been a while since you’ve been to Garland, then it’s been a while since you’ve felt the mark of something independent, something unique, something bold and of its own time, and place waiting for you to stumble upon it. It might even give you the tools to make your mark. To pursue that passion. to live life to the fullest, to do it your way, on your terms, in a town that truly supports you.

If Garland could sing, that’s the kind of song it would sing: crooning for you to discover, to have vision, and to make your mark with us.

For more information, visit MakeYourMarkGarland.com.