Choices When Planning A Remembrance

People usually select one or more of the following choices that Beechwood offers, individually or in any combination, and often personalize them with special memorabilia, videos, photos, music, flowers or various other items that reflect the individual who is being remembered.


Visitation/Informal Gathering

This event is usually hosted by the deceased’s family or friends, and provides an opportunity for people to gather informally and express their condolences. An urn (if cremation has occurred) or a casket (if a cremation will take place later or if it is a casket burial) may or may not be present during the event — this is an individual choice.

Visitations/Informal Gatherings often take place prior to a Life Celebration, Memorial Service, Funeral Service and/or burial — usually for an afternoon and an evening, sometimes for an hour or two immediately before the commemorative event. On occasion, a visitation or informal gathering may be the only commemorative event to which a broader group is invited with the remainder of commemorative events being held in private — for immediate family and friends only.


Life Celebration

A Life Celebration is often considered to be a “non-funeral.” It is very personalized to the deceased. Friends and family often share stories and anecdotes that reflect their relationship with and the character of the deceased. It may be led by a religious or cultural leader, or by a relative or friend of the deceased.


Memorial Service

This is a tribute to the deceased that reflects on the individual’s life. It is usually somewhat more formal than a Life Celebration, and may or may not include religious or cultural components. It too is highly personalized to the deceased and sometimes takes place at a later date, after a private graveside service and burial has occurred.


Funeral Service

This kind of service usually involves a religious or community leader, and reflects the traditions of various faith, ethnic and cultural groups — all of which are welcome at Beechwood.


Catered Reception

Most families and friends host a catered reception after a Life Celebration, Memorial Service, Funeral Service and/or burial. Some families and friends elect to have a private commemorative service and burial, but host a reception for the broader group of friends and others who want to pay their respects to the deceased. Beechwood’s exclusive catering partners will provide full catering service including hosts. Menus are available upon request.


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