A Little Piece Of Canadian History At Maple Leaf Forever Park



Hands down, one of the most important neighbourhood amenities for urban dwellers is having great green space near home, for exercise, fresh air, and communing with nature – all of which are good for the soul. Just because we love living in the centre of the action doesn’t mean being encased in cement and metal all day doesn’t occasionally chafe. Escaping to commune with living things – lying on soft grass or reclined in the shade of a large maple – is both a respite and a way to recharge.

Speaking of maples, today we’re talking about a park that’s famous for maple trees – or, rather, one maple tree in particular:

Leslieville’s Maple Leaf Forever Park at 62 Laing Street.



This is not just a run-of-the-mill regular park (although it does have favourite staples – like a playground and community garden). The park is named for the famous patriotic song The Maple Leaf Forever written by Alexander Muir in the year of Canada’s Confederation – 1867. It is rated the second most popular patriotic song after “O Canada,” which wasn’t written until 13 years later!



Reportedly, Muir was inspired to write the patriotic song by a staid and sturdy Maple tree, that sat in front of Maple Cottage, his residence at the time.  Maple Cottage still stands in the park today, with a plaque commemorating the song, the residence, the tree and the history.  It was designated a historical site by the city in 1992.



Sadly, the century-and-a-half-old tree came down during a windstorm in 2013, but the trunk still stands in Maple Leaf Forever Park. Wood collected from the felled tree was fashioned into objects that play a role in Canadian cultural history, including the speaker podium at Toronto City Council!

Here are three pieces made with wood from the tree: a light fixture, a lamp, and a lectern by Tom Fidgen.


*Photos courtesy of LEAF and the Ottawa Citizen.


There was a lot of wood to use, so projects are ongoing with artisans to create significant pieces, including ones for the Parliament Buildings, the ROM and the Museum of Civilization.

The tree does go on, as several seedlings were harvested over the years, and one took to grow into a new tree, now planted in the park for everyone to enjoy.

As for the song itself, a leaf falling from the tree was his muse, so the story goes.


* Photo courtesy of the Ontario Digital Archive.


Apparently, Muir was on a walk about the neighbourhood with George Leslie (for whom Leslieville is named) when the leaf floated from the tree and landed on Muir’s arm, with quite a creative impact.  Leslie suggested that Muir run with the idea and write the song.

It’s a good story, but some historians refute its historical accuracy and the tree in question, given the dates of construction of the cottage, the dates that Muir lived in the area – and the date of the song.

But you can certainly visit the tree and the cottage and decide for yourself.




This song has stood the test of time, and a version of it was sung by Michael Bublé at the closing ceremonies at the 2010 Winter Olympic games in Vancouver.


* Courtesy of ForeverFest, with thanks.


Today, the park is also the site of events like Forever Fest which draws residents together from this east-end community. Love!



How wonderful would it be to have this patriotic piece of Canadian history, practically in your backyard? The lucky buyers of our new listing at 55 Laing will be able to enjoy that kind of proximity to the park, which abuts the rear of the neighbours directly across the street! It’s NOW SOLD!

This detached family dwelling nestled on an exceptionally deep lot offers a grand opportunity for redevelopment. We call it: An Opportunity For Refreshment & Reinvention On Laing In Leslieville.





If you’re a lover of village vibes and the pedestrian lifestyle, Leslieveille is probably your jam. Explore this past listing that we called, Living Well & In Wonder In Leslieville, now SOLD!




Want to have someone on your side?

Since 1989, I’ve steered my career through a real estate market crash and burn; survived a slow painful cross-country recession; completed an M.E.S. graduate degree from York University called ‘Planning Housing Environments’; executed the concept, sales & marketing of multiple new condo and vintage loft conversions; and guided hundreds of clients through the purchase and sale of hundreds of freehold and condominium dwellings across the original City of Toronto. From a gritty port industrial city into a glittering post-industrial global centre, I’ve navigated the ebbs and flows of a property market as a consistent Top Producer. And I remain as passionate about it today as when I started.

Consider contacting me at 416-845-9905 or email me at Steve@urbaneer.com. It would be my pleasure to personally introduce our services.

We’d love to introduce our services to you.

Serving first and second-time Buyers, relocations, renovators, and those building their long-term property portfolios, our mandate is to help clients choose the property that will realize the highest future return on their investment while ensuring the property best serves their practical needs and their dream of “Home” during their ownership.

Are you considering selling? We welcome providing you with a comprehensive assessment free of charge, including determining your Buyer profile, ways to optimize your return on investment, and tailoring the listing process to suit your circumstances. Check out How Urbaneer’s Custom Marketing Program Sold This Authentic Broadview Loft In Riverside to learn more about what we do!

Consider letting Urbaneer guide you through your Buying or Selling process, without pressure, or hassle.

We are here to help!



Thanks for reading!


-The Urbaneer Team

Steven Fudge, Sales Representative
& The Innovative Urbaneer Team
Bosley Real Estate Ltd., Brokerage – (416) 322-800


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