AU investigating souvenir options with Toomer’s Oaks wood, but ‘the trees will not come down until they’re dead’

A photo of the first pile of branches and limbs cut away from the College St. Toomer’s Oak yesterday. The dead wood will likely be turned into souvenirs.

The limbs and branches sawed off the Toomer’s Oaks on Wednesday? You probably haven’t seen the last of them.

According to Debbie Shaw, Vice President of Auburn Alumni Affairs, the university is moving forward with plans to turn the Toomer’s Oaks into souvenirs if and when they die.

Shaw says that would include the dead wood recently pruned from the oaks

“It’s being saved,” she says.

“We’re talking to companies to sort of investigate what’s going to be the best type of product to create,” Shaw says. “We have some ideas centered on doing two or three large, big things with the wood, but we want to be able to share this piece of Auburn history with as many people as possible.”

When the souvenir possibility began taking root in January, Shaw hinted that writing pens made out of the wood or even gavels could be a possibility and could “be sold to help raise money for the cost of the new trees, transplanting those.”

“Whatever it ends up being, we want the price points to make it an item that many people can own.”

Shaw was the chairperson of the Committee to Determine the Future of Rolling Toomer’s Corner which in January recommended to AU president Dr. Jay Gogue that large trees—probably this kind—be planted in place of the Toomer’s Oaks (if they die), and to implement a temporary solution—possibly a system of wires—to rolling the corner until the new trees are healthy enough to be rolled.

“I think they (the Toomer’s Oaks) are hanging on longer than we expected them to and so the attention has really shifted to the care of the current trees and what we’re going to do this fall,” Shaw says. “The tree experts have told us it won’t quicken their death if they’re rolled this fall.”

Though a timetable hasn’t been set on removing the oaks, Shaw is certain this will be the last fall they will be rolled.

“But the trees will not come down until they’re dead.”

Related: Rolling Toomer’s BEFORE the game—a Lost Auburn Tradition.

More on the the Toomer’s Oaks: Wire system being considered as temporary solution for rolling Toomer’s / On the feasibility of a Toomer’s Corner transplant / Toomer’s Corner rollings didn’t start with Punt, Bama, Punt, says History / Did Auburn students celebrate Bear Bryant’s death by rolling Toomer’s Corner

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