Auburn businesses are preparing for a busy A-Day - WRBL

Auburn businesses are preparing for a busy A-Day

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AUBURN, Ala. -

Auburn business owners are joining forces to help thousands of fans remember the landmark Toomer's Oaks as they are rolled for the last time.

This year's A-Day marks the end of an era for Auburn fans. After poisoning and multiple burnings, the oaks have been rendered lifeless.

Now thousands are expected to converge on Toomer's Corner to throw celebratory toilet paper on the trees, and the downtown merchants are ready.

Will Casanova, a manager at Moe's Original BBQ, says, "We're treating it just like a game day, and game day preparation is we just up everything by 2, 3, 4, 5 times."

The crowds have already started pouring in and the shop owners are commemorating the Toomer's Oaks by selling specially wrapped rolls of toilet paper.

"We knew with our fan base and our locals and our merchants being together that we would probably sell a lot," says Eric Stamp, owner of the shirt-printing store STAMP. "We started out with a goal of 5000, and I know we're probably going to sell a couple thousand more than that."

Beth McDonald works at Wrapsody and adds, "With this toilet paper roll, everybody jumped on board and was all for it because ultimately it will benefit the community because the money will go so they can put on parades, and the downtown events during football weekends and stuff, so it'll be a great thing."

A portion of the proceeds from the rolls will go towards the Alumni Association Scholarship Fund. The stores are also churning out a variety of souvenirs for the occasion.

The merchants hope the increase in traffic will help bring in some of the revenue they've been missing. With Auburn's less-than-stellar athletic seasons, the shops have made less money than in years past.

McDonald says, "This football season wasn't quite the best for Auburn, we still had a good loyal fan base come in and support us, but definitely this weekend's going to be huge. The numbers are going to be great with people coming out, the Auburn family really coming together to hug each other and support each other in this time."

"We expect there to be a ton of people and to have a big day of sales," says Stamp. "A-Day is always a pretty big day regardless of how our season went the previous year. Everyone's optimistic about next year."

While the merchants describe the last rolling of the trees as bittersweet, they say excitement is definitely in the air.

You can find the commemorative toilet paper at about two dozen merchants in downtown Auburn for five dollars each. There's also a new app for iPhone and iPad that will let you keep rolling the oaks for years to come.

The university will remove the Toomer's Oaks Tuesday.

Jessi Mitchell

Jessi joined the WRBL news team in October 2012 after working as a freelance production assistant for MTV Networks in Los Angeles.
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