By Katie Herrera
BIRMINGHAM (WBRC) - With the Iron Bowl just a few days away, Regions Bank used the traditional rivalry for a good cause. The company raised $20,000 for the March of Dimes "Blue Jeans for Babies" campaign by selling Auburn and Alabama gear.
Wednesday and Friday Regions Bank workers had the chance to wear jeans and T-shirts at work. Some were even caught shaking shakers.
This was the third year Regions held the Iron Bowl fundraiser for the March of Dimes.
"We've done better and better every year. We've had more than 860 people contribute this year, which is by far the biggest," Bill Horton, Regions Bank Area President said. "I continue to be surprised and proud of our associates. We always look for ways to give back, and this is a great example."
Regions sold Alabama and Auburn T-shirts, as well as "Aubie" and "Big AL" beanie babies.
In the Iron Bowl spirit, it became a friendly competition with one winner.
"I am proud to announce, for the third year in a row, the Alabama team raised the most money," announced Horton to a lobby full of workers who participated.
Cheers erupted from the Alabama fans, who will once again have bragging rights.
But they know the real winners are the premature babies.
"If it were not for the research from the March of Dimes over the past several decades, I'm not sure that I'd be standing here a mother today," explained Ashley Garrison, who works in human resources.
Garrison's son, Baron, was born about 10 weeks before due date. She had to spend about seven weeks in the hospital after he was born, but was able to bring home her 4 lb. 13 oz. baby boy.
"We were so blessed to have come home, to have come through those 50 days of the most intense and soul searching moments you can imagine. The NICU is a tough place to be," Garrison said. "Thankfully, because of the March of Dimes, we have a lively thriving nine month old."
Garrison said she hopes Baron grows up to enjoy the Iron Bowl as much as she does, and she hopes the challenge is a preview of the game.
"We've been lucky so far. Team Alabama has won the T-shirt challenge the last two years, and then the game has followed. So we hope that this year is an indication of a win coming up on Friday!"