Toomer’s Corner is a location of many memories, tears, laughs and celebrations. One particular thing those beautiful Oaks are famous for is engagements. Many individuals are reminded when they look at their ring finger of what Toomer’s means to them.
Floyd and Kim Patterson can be categorized as an Auburn couple. They live in Mobile and have a daughter, Alyssa Patterson, who is a freshman here at Auburn University.
Auburn played Vanderbilt in football on October 13, 1990 and won. Floyd had his proposal plan in mind and was ready to uniquely propose at Toomer’s. Kim was terrified of getting separated, but Floyd was determined to propose right under the Oaks.
“The next thing I knew he had a death grip on my hand dragging me through the crowd,” Kim said. She quickly learned you don’t truly experience Toomer’s unless you’re exactly under the trees.
Floyd threw a roll into the tree and then tied the ring to the bottom of the stream of paper. Kim was not paying a lick of attention and thought Floyd had left her until she realized everyone was looking in Floyd’s direction.
She turned around to find Floyd down on one knee with the ring in his hand.
“I’ve never heard Toomer’s so quiet when I popped the question,” Floyd said.
Kim’s response? A loud “WAR EAGLE!”
This particular engagement marked more than just an engagement. For their daughter Alyssa it recently became a milestone in her relationship with her boyfriend Justin. Alyssa had told Justin the story of her parent’s engagement and he took it upon himself to recreate that moment for their three year anniversary.
Justin had called Alyssa’s dad to find out exactly where under the tree he proposed to Kim and then planned his surprise.
Many Auburn traditions were included in this surprise: Toomer’s lemonade, Momma G’s sandwiches and ice cream from Marble Slab. “I also packed toilet paper in the basket so that we could roll the trees just like her parents did,” Justin said.
Christmas break was near and Justin went to Alyssa’s dorm saying he wanted to walk around campus and talk before they both departed for the break. Since it was in December, the last thing on Alyssa’s mind was a picnic outside.
They walked to Toomer’s and Alyssa was shocked at what she saw. A perfect picnic set up complete with an Auburn blanket and a vase of daisies, which are her favorite flowers.
What made it so special was that Justin planned the picnic in the exact place where Alyssa’s dad had proposed to her mom.
“It was probably the sweetest thing Justin has ever done for me,” Alyssa said. “I couldn’t have asked for anything more!”
As you can see, the beautiful Toomer’s Oaks hold more than just roots in the ground. They hold roots for personal and meaningful traditions in people’s lives. WAR EAGLE!