AUSTIN (KXAN) — Senator Kirk Watson has been planning for Saturday, April 6 since the start of the year. It’s the day when he will serve as Texas Governor for the day. He’s calling it a “Day of Service.”

During this 86th legislature, Sen. Watson (D-Austin) was elected by his colleagues to serve as the President Pro Tempore, putting him in line behind Governor Greg Abbott and Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick. Any time those two are out of the state, Watson serves as Governor.

“But the long-standing tradition is, we coordinate at least one day where we can kind of set it aside, be Governor for the day, and enjoy,” Watson said.

To mark his day as Governor, Sen. Watson is encouraging community members to join him in a day of service. He’s asking people to volunteer with three local organizations: Mobile Loaves and Fishes, Austin Pets Alive! and Austin Habitat for Humanity.

“What I wanted to do is not have parades on Congress Avenue, give big inaugural speeches or anything like that, but really use this an opportunity to say thanks and thanks to this community that’s been good to me for so long,” Watson said. “And the way I see giving thanks in some instances is by giving back,” he continued.

Austin Pets Alive! said they are thrilled that Sen. Watson will be volunteering with them while he is Governor for the day.

“It’s an honor that he values animal lives so much that we’re one of his chosen non-profits of this special day,” APA Communications and Events Manager Katera Berent said.

Some of their volunteer activities scheduled for Watson’s Day of Service include making leashes for the dogs, participating with “enrichment activities” for both dogs and cats, and just spending time with animals, allowing them to socialize with people.

Austin Habitat for Humanity Communications Manager Lindsey Bates said the organization is incredibly honored to have been one of the chosen non-profits for Senator Watson’s Governor “Governor for a Day” Day of Service.

“We are really excited about the opportunity to share Austin Habitat for Humanity’s mission and highlight the importance of affordable housing for the Austin community,” Bates said.

Sen. Watson is looking forward to showing some love and thanking his community on Saturday, saying: “I love this town and I love Central Texas because of the people!”