Tim Hortons sends gift basket to Holtby family tortoises after border ordeal

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Mae Whitesides
·3 min read
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Tim Hortons sends delightful gift basket to Holtby tortoises originally appeared on NBC Sports Washington

If you thought you had heard the last of Braden Holtby’s tortoises, restaurant chain Tim Hortons had other ideas.

A refresher on the Holtby tortoise saga: Two weeks ago, Holtby’s wife, Brandi, asked Twitter for assistance in contacting the US Fish and Wildlife Services to expedite export permits for the family’s two pet tortoises.

In a follow-up tweet, she said Holtby had remained in the US with tortoises until the issue was resolved, inspiring hilarious mental images of the former Caps goaltender standing on the Canadian border, a tortoise under each arm.

Holtby, who became a free agent at the end of the 2019-20 season after almost a decade in Washington and signed with the Vancouver Canucks on Oct. 9, is a Canadian citizen from Saskatchewan. He and his family moved to Vancouver last month.

FWS apparently moved faster than a tortoise in pushing through their permits, as Brandi updated the Twitter world the next day that Holtby and the tortoises, named Honey and Maple, had made it safely through the border to reunite with the family. (She also officially gave permission to laugh at all the mental images her previous tweets had inspired.) 

Honey and Maple’s story then caught the attention of Tim Hortons, which wanted to offer some comfort for the difficult ordeal they had endured and welcome them to Canada. The Canadian equivalent of Dunkin’ Donuts, the multinational restaurant chain is based in Toronto and was founded by former Maple Leafs’ defenseman Tim Horton. 

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Brandi tweeted a photo of the gifts Tim Hortons sent, which not only included donuts with an image of the tortoises in front of the Canadian flag and a photoshopped image of Holtby with Honey and Maple under his arms, but also an Upper Deck Sports player card for each tortoise and a Brandi Holtby hockey Barbie doll. 

No doubt Honey and Maple are living the good life in Canada right now.