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Where To Start


Things to think about


The preplanning process can begin with the cemetery or a funeral home. But before making a visit to either, think about the following:

  • Gather information for the obituary

  • Choose a charity for people to direct donations

  • Make note of the type of service you want: church, funeral home, graveside

  • Choose traditional burial or cremation (options)

Choose a place


Arrange a visit to Greenwood Cemetery. Once there, you may decide to:

  • Purchase a lot or niche or;

  • Choose to be scattered in our scattering garden (more info)

  • Decide how many burial spaces to buy (Note: One grave holds: one coffin, or; one coffin and one cremation vault, or; two cremation vaults. One niche holds two appropriately sized  urns)

  • Pre-pay for burial costs and for the final inscription on your headstone


These choices can be recorded at the funeral home and some can be prepaid

  • Casket or cremation container

  • Flower arrangements

  • Clothes to be dressed in

  • Choose family or friends to give a reading or eulogy

  • Select music, poems, program design




With different styles, colors, finishes and lettering, there is no limit to what can be created for a personalized marker for you, you and your spouse or for a family lot.

  • Choose a monument company that will make this sometimes overwhelming process a little easier

  • Make sure the selection works with the lot you purchased

  • The cemetery will work with the company to install a foundation

Recent Loss

Funeral arrangements


The first call should be made to the funeral home. Decisions will be made there that will affect day and time of funeral and interment at the cemetery.

A place


If a lot had already been purchased at the cemetery, the funeral director will make arrangements with us for interment. Before a burial is made, we must have information on which grave is to be opened and what type of vault had been secured.

If a lot or columbarium niche (more info) has not yet been purchased, you must visit the cemetery to choose a lot or niche. Call us at (231)347-6531 to make an appointment.

You may also choose to scatter your loved one's ashes in our scattering garden (more info) and pay for an inscription on a scattering garden tablet. We don't typically advise scattering in the winter because of the frozen ground, but it can be done if that is your desire.

If it is winter: You may choose whether to make burial at Greenwood or you may arrange with the funeral home for storage until spring. Note: Greenwood Cemetery has the ability to perform burials year-round, but there is a surcharge for graveside services in the winter months to pay for snow/ice removal.



If a headstone or niche or inscription tablet at the scattering gardens had already been purchased and installed, the cemetery will take care of the inscription of the death date only if it had been prepaid. Otherwise, the final date cut must be ordered through a monument company.

If a headstone has not been purchased,

  • Find a monument company

  • You or the funeral director will contact us to ensure your selection works with the lot and communicate the foundation size

Our promise

In our daily tasks and travels through the cemetery, we pass by the graves of our town's residents who died more than a century ago -- Curtis, Rose, Waukazoo, Porter, Jarman, Rosenthal ... Their graves are as well attended to today as those of people buried here only a few months ago.  We promise to perpetually honor and care for those who have gone before us.

Cremation Options

We offer a few different options for future generations to still have "a place to go" when a loved one has been cremated

spring scattering garden.jpg

Scattering Garden
There is no charge to scatter ashes in the scattering garden on the bluff overlooking Little Traverse Bay (once we are notified of time and date). You may choose to pay for an inscription on a Scattering Garden tablet. (See inscription info below)

Columbarium niches

Columbarium Niche
Two urns fit into each niche (if appropriately sized). We have columbariums in different areas of the cemetery from which to choose. Price of niche includes inscription.


Personal columbarium

Personal Columbarium 
This option involves a purchase of a cemetery lot and a separate purchase of a monument designed to hold cremains.

Burial of Cremains

Many choose a traditional lot with headstone, but with the cremation urn buried inside a vault rather than a casket. The vault containing the urn must be of a certain material, must be greater than 100 sq. in., and is required. 

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