Newsletter Signup

New Roly Bird ‘Tree of Good Fortune’ Planted at Burlington City Hall

STOCK_Roly Bird Chestnut New Tree_with Plaque


The original tree was planted as a sign of friendship and good fortune. In 2019, I took up the late former Burlington Mayor Roly Bird’s tradition of gifting a horse chestnut from the tree to citizens, visitors and political dignitaries, during the Official Burlington Delegation trip to Itabashi, Japan in commemoration of the 30th anniversary of the twinning of our cities. I gifted a chestnut souvenir from the original tree – and crafted by a Burlington resident – to Mayor Takeshi Sakamoto. It is great to see this symbol and great piece of Burlington history replanted and the legacy of friendship and good fortune continue in our city.”

*Please see below a news release issued by the City of Burlington.

New Roly Bird Tree of Good Fortune.

Burlington, Ont. — Oct. 14, 2021 Good fortune will continue to bloom within downtown Burlington with the planting of a new “Tree of Good Fortune” at City Hall in the greenspace at Brant and Ontario Street. The new Horse Chestnut tree has been planted in the same spot as the original tree and is marked by the original plaque.

About the Tree of Good Fortune

The City of Burlington’s first Tree of Good Fortune was planted from a Horse Chestnut tree seedling from Burlington resident Dr. Wilbur Weaver many years ago. In 1992, the Tree of Good Fortune was dedicated to former Mayor of Burlington Roly Bird (1978-1991), in honour of the faith and ambition he instilled in the recipients of the tree’s fruit.

During Mayor Bird’s term of office, he gathered the horse chestnuts from the tree in the fall and presented them throughout the year to citizens of the city, visitors to Burlington and political dignitaries.

When Mayor Bird honoured someone with a souvenir chestnut, he offered the following words of wisdom:

“This is the fruit of THE TREE OF GOOD FORTUNE. If you accept this fruit and believe, have faith and work very hard in life, you will achieve all of the goals and objectives you set for yourself, and everything that you aspire to will come to pass. You must, however, continue to hold on to the fruit of THE TREE OF GOOD FORTUNE, to have belief, great faith, and especially work hard, and the fruit of THE TREE OF GOOD FORTUNE will greatly assist you as you move through this life.”

Sadly, the original tree had to be removed for public safety in early 2020 due to age, rot and damage from a 2018 windstorm.

Residents are welcome to visit the new Tree of Good fortune.


*Posted by John Bkila, Mayor’s Media and Digital Communications Specialist

Receive new post notifications by email

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Here are guidelines before you comment, and our expectations before we will post:

  • Be civil. Would you speak this way to a good friend? If not, rewrite.
  • Focus on the issues. Build your argument and make your case in support of your opinion from facts, research or other sources. That way we can all learn. “I disagree with so-and-so because…” is fine; “So-and-so is naïve/stupid  for thinking the way he/she does and here’s why…” is not acceptable.
  • Don’t make personal attacks. Don’t assume motives of those you disagree with, make unfounded allegations, spread rumours, or engage in any other behaviours that would discourage you from participating if someone said this to, or about, you. The Golden Rule applies: Do unto others as you would have done to you. We will edit or not post comments with this type of content.
  • Say it once: When comments from the same individual or individuals become repetitive, going over ground already stated, we reserve the right to close commenting.
  • Use your full, and real, name. If wish to make a comment in public, we expect you will publicly stand behind it with your name. If you don’t want to publicly reveal your name, that’s fine; you are always welcome to share your thoughts with me privately via my email below. I welcome and consider all feedback in making decisions for the community.
  • Have fun, consider and learn. Share your views and read those of others. May we all benefit from a healthy exchange of ideas, and learn a little more about the people in our community, what you think, and what’s important to each of you. You may end up changing your mind about an issue; even if you don’t, we hope everyone will gain a greater understanding of why people have different perspectives.

Newsletter Sign Up

Phone: 905-335-7607

Media Specialist: John Bkila