The following is one in a series of blogs prepared by the Convention & Visitors Bureaus of the 14 cities that are home to the universities of the Southeastern Conference. These blogs are presented to enhance fans' enjoyment of the rich history and culture of SEC cities across the 11-state footprint of the Conference.
Auburn-Opelika is the coolest college town in the South, according to us, and one of the top cities in America to live, according to CNN. Easy to get to and easy to love, it's a perfect choice for a weekend getaway.
Visit in the fall and you'll see lots of white stuff in our tress, but it's not snow. Rolling Toomer's Corner is one of Auburn's oldest and most renowned traditions - thousands of AU faithful gather in downtown Auburn to celebrate Tiger victories by hurling tissue into the surrounding trees, lamp posts or anything else that will stand still long enough. A quirky fracas that can last for hours, a blizzard of paper is left blanketing the entire intersection. There's no way you haven't heard of it, but seeing is believing! And here's a fun fact: Auburn is the only city in the country with a line item in its budget for removing toilet tissue!
If you like to keep your weekends in the great outdoors, load up the bike rack and check out Chewacla State Park. With over 32 miles of versatile track, Chewacla offers world-class trail systems designed for both mountain biking beginners and seasoned pros. Located in the last foothills of the Appalachian Mountains, don't miss the Great Wall of Chewacla and the Loch Ness Cobra nestled among miles of well-groomed flow trails.
If your idea of adventure happens on your plate instead of two wheels, opportunities for indulgent dining abound in Auburn-Opelika's emerging culinary scene. With over 50 independent and chef-owned experiences to choose from, you'll see why, and if you haven't yet heard the hype, you'll definitely get it.
You'll also find plenty of specialty retailers as well as a variety of activities and diversions. The community offers year-round outdoor experiences from picking your own berries or flowers at a local farm to sipping wine produced from grapes you just tasted off the vine. Historic downtown Opelika houses its very own brewery, local distillery and the South's largest by-the-glass wine bar.
No story of SEC traditions would be complete without the one widely considered the absolute best. It's one of the most iconic moments in all of college football - Jordan-Hare's capacity crowd of almost 90,000 rumbling in unison as a rare eagle is released to free-fly in circles around the stadium, eventually landing mid-field on its leathery pseudo-prey. We defy any living, breathing human, regardless of the colors you wear, to not get goosebumps from this phenomenon. War Eagle is a resident of Auburn University's Southeastern Raptor Rehabilitation Center where she has been raised and trained to open home football games in this inspirational fashion. War Eagle, y'all.