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Cemetery Etiquette

When visiting a cemetery, there are a number of basic rules you should keep in mind in order to show respect to both the living and the dead. These tips will help to keep you out of trouble and make sure you and your fellow visitors enjoy a courteous, peaceful experience.


Follow the Rules

Look for a sign near the entrance with cemetery rules and observe them as well as any floral regulations.

 

Obey the Hours

Cemeteries are typically open from dawn until dusk. Do not remain on the property after dark, or you might be charged with trespassing.

 

Drive with Care

Follow the roadways at a slow speed and do not drive or park on the grass. Watch out for pedestrians and offer to move your car if the lane  is narrow and another car needs to pass.

 

Respect the Graves

As a sign of respect, and to avoid damaging stones, do not touch monuments or headstones. Also do not remove flowers, tokens or tributes left behind by family members or other visitors.

 

Look After Your Children

Like adults, children should act in a respectful manner when in a cemetery. Instruct them not to run, yell and play or climb on the monuments.

 

Speak Softly & Politely

Keep your voice down and avoid using bad language.

 

Lower the Volume

Make sure your cellphone is on silent if you must have on your person, and avoid phone conversations as your voice may carry. Also turn off your car stereo while driving or parking in the cemetery.

 

Be Respectful of Services and Other Mourners

If a funeral is taking place during your visit, respect the privacy of mourners and give them adequate space. Avoid getting in the way of processions and refrain from taking photos of anyone attending the funeral or visiting other graves.

 

Don't Leave Trash Behind

Either use trash receptacles or take your trash with you when you leave. Littering is disrespectful, not to mention it creates more work for the caretakers.

 

Leash Your Pets

If pets are allowed in the cemetery, be sure to keep yours on a leash.

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