This week I was in Mobile to plant the cloned Toomer's Corner oak that was auctioned off down there. I took advantage of the trip to bring back a load of azaleas. It was a long trip, but a productive one.
Closer to home there are a lot of things going on like the Tie-Dye fundraiser I am doing with one of the Auburn sororities to raise money for diabetes research and treatment. That event is coming up March 28th. I don't know all of the details, but it involves tie-dying shirts that will be for sale.
On Saturday I will be in Tuscaloosa at the opening of Tree House Nurseries to do a presentation on Japanese maples and I am planning to take a Crimson Queen (maple) and give it to Coach Nick Saban's wife for their charity to help tornado victims. That particular tree is one of the more popular varieties of Japanese maples in this part of the country because of its ability to withstand a lot of heat and sun.
We have raffled off a lot of trees in the Auburn area for various projects. There is another one coming up on April 14th to benefit the Auburn University Arboretum called New Orleans Night. On that day, which is also the date of the A-Day football game, I will be at the Jule Collins Smith Museum where we will have trees and other plants for sale.
We are also in the process of planning our 12th and last Blue Jean Ball, a fundraiser for the Auburn University nursing program at our farm. We plan to continue to have an annual fundraiser there. I think going forward it will be something for Auburn's horticulture program or for the landscape architecture and design programs.
Hopefully, we can come up with a plan that will work for the school and get innovative in ways that we can generate money for the university and scholarships or for whatever Auburn officials feel like the needs are for the department. Of course, horticulture is a program that I love and am heavily involved in these days.
With the warm weather we have been busy at our farm with a variety of groups coming to visit–garden clubs, church groups, master gardeners and so forth. I always enjoy those visits and we try to accommodate as many people as we can and as many charity events as we can conceivably do without self-destructing. To make it easier we are currently building a reception area with restrooms, something that will make it easier to handle large groups.
This is also a time of year when the are a lot athletic-related activities on the Auburn campus. Of course, I am looking forward to A-Day and the spring game.
I am particularly looking forward to a dinner the night before A-Day being put on by Dr. Gogue for the three Heisman Trophy winners who will be honored on A-Day when their statues are unveiled outside Jordan-Hare Stadium the morning before the spring game. That is going to be a busy weekend, but without a doubt a fun one.
Also, I want to let folks know how appreciative I am to Alabama Power and Aliant Bank for sponsoring these columns that allow me the opportunity to share my views and thoughts on college football and other subjects with the people. It is truly fun to for me to do it and I am enjoying life in my "retirement," which seems to be keeping me more than a little busy. However, that is the way I like. I feel good and I am as healthy as I have been in years. That has allowed me to be involved in a lot of projects. Hopefully, they have done some good for a lot of people.
(If you have a question or a subject you would like me to write about in future columns, you can email it to PatDye@autigers.com.)
Editor's Note: This is part of a series of columns that College Football Hall of Fame member Pat Dye is writing for AUTigers.com about the game he played and coached. An All-American player at Georgia and one of the top head coaches in SEC history at Auburn, he also served as a head coach at East Carolina and Wyoming. Dye participates in the Legends Poll, a Top 25 rating of the best teams in college football as determined by a panel of all-star former head coaches. Dye writes three columns for AUTigers.com--The Dye-Log, the Dye-Gest and Pat's Picks.