Nearly two years to the date after they were planted, the iconic Toomer’s Corner Oaks will be taken out this Saturday.
As pretty much anyone in the state, or even the country, know by now, the original trees were poisoned after the 2010 Iron Bowl. Despite efforts to save the trees, they were deemed dead and were removed after the 2013 A-Day game. New trees were planted and the entire block was renovated in fall/spring of 2014-15, and there were extra precautions taken to avoid rolling the new oak trees in 2015. Rolling was finally allowed again this past fall. However, after the LSU football victory, the toilet paper on the trees was lit on fire and burned up in the Magnolia Avenue tree*. Early reports were unclear on whether the tree would survive, but as time went on it became clear it wouldn’t make it. A quick walk downtown confirms that the trees don’t look very healthy.
The College Street tree, while in better shape than the Magnolia tree, hasn’t been taking as well as the horticulture department would like. Had the fire not occurred in the Magnolia oak, supposedly neither tree would have been removed.
Removal of the oaks will begin at 6 AM this Saturday.
Everyone with any connection to Auburn, whether the football team, the University, or the town, has memories with Toomer’s Corner. For me personally, two stick out. The first was going to the last roll of the original oaks in 2013. It was the first time I came to Auburn on my own as a high school senior, and the experience is something I won’t forget. I’m not sure I can put words to it, but here’s a picture that might explain it.
The second great memory I have of Toomer’s happened on the other side of the street corner outside Toomer’s Drugs. This past summer, I proposed to my beautiful fiance right at Toomer’s. She said yes, and now we are 164 days from getting married. All thanks to some great trees and a nice cup of lemonade.
We all have great memories at Toomer’s. In light of the bad news, let us know in the comments what yours are.
* Here at College & Mag, we don’t mention certain people’s names.