top of page

Before you decide to scatter someone somewhere, think about this

Updated: Mar 9, 2022

Scattering Garden, Greenwood Cemetery, Petoskey
Our Scattering Garden overlooks beautiful Little Traverse Bay and offers inscription tablets if you wish to memorialize your loved one.

In this day and age some would ask the question, why use a cemetery? With the rising cremation rate and the warm feeling one gets from scattering the cremains of a loved one in a "romantic" or "special" place is comforting. But it isn't permanent.

A place to remember. Forever.

A cemetery is a place where people care. They care about maintaining an honorable place. Very few take a job at a cemetery because it is a prestigious job or because the money is the best. Those who do work in cemeteries for wrong reasons seldom last long. There is a satisfaction in knowing that you are entrusted with caring for the burial place of a loved one.

One lady told me her children wanted to scatter her husband at his favorite deer runway, and then added, “but I don’t even know where that is.” She never came back, so I am assuming that her children got their wish. I have an uncle who was scattered in a local lake, but I have no idea which part of the lake is his "gravespace," so I am unable to visit and pay my respects.

It is said that many scatter at Disney World near a favorite ride and when the cremains are noticed by staff that they are vacuumed up by workers in hazmat suits.

A gentleman came to my office one day and purchased a grave for his father along with a marker. When I asked about a date of burial he told me that his dad had already been scattered and added “but I have no place to go.” After the marker was placed he came to visit his dad’s grave at least 3 times a week for a number of months.

The Board of Greenwood Cemetery is so committed to the importance of cemeteries that we allow families to scatter their loved one in our beautiful scattering garden at no charge. If we are informed that a scattering took place, we will put the records of the person into our database so future generations will always have a place to visit. This is done at no charge.

While scattering cremains may seem like a nice thing to do, it is very short-term. Cemeteries are forever. Some scatter in a church garden -- but churches move or cease to exist. What about the cremains of the loved ones interred there?

I would never tell you that Greenwood Cemetery is the ONLY cemetery to consider but I will tell you that ANY cemetery is better than none.


bottom of page