There is only one certainty about the future: at some point, you and your loved ones won’t be there for it.
Funerals and memorials are important ways to remember those we love who have passed, but they don’t have to be stodgy or glum. There are a variety of alternatives to a traditional funeral service that will still enable you to honor the life of a loved one. Here are six creative ideas for alternative funerals and memorial services.
Take a Group to a Ballgame
Going to a sporting event is a great way to partake in an experience that the deceased would have enjoyed, and it provides an opportunity for friends and family to bond in remembrance of their loved one. You can even make custom t-shirts with the deceased’s name and favorite team printed on them so that everyone can honor their memory as they cheer on their favorite team.
Screen Your Loved One’s Favorite Film
Showing your loved one’s favorite movie at the memorial can be a special way to celebrate their life. You could even enjoy popcorn and other refreshments while everyone watches the movie together.
Host a Musical Celebration
Music is a powerful way to tell a story, and it can evoke strong emotions. Consider collecting songs that were meaningful to your loved one, or ask family and friends for their favorite musical moments that inspire memories of the deceased. Put together a playlist of these songs and listen to it as a group before releasing balloons or scattering ashes. You could even have a karaoke session to sing along to the songs and honor your loved one’s memory.
Consider Sustainable Burials and Cremations
Sustainable burials and cremations are becoming more popular as people look for ways to reduce their environmental impact. Natural burials involve burying a wooden casket or a cloth-shrouded body in the ground without embalming fluid. Alkaline hydrolysis, or hydro cremation, uses only water and natural alkaline instead of harsh chemicals.
Planting a tree or creating a garden as a living memorial are other green ways to honor your loved one’s life. Choose plants and flowers that had special meaning to the deceased. This activity can also be done with friends and family as a way to grieve together. You can scatter or bury ashes near or under the tree.
Send a Message in a Bottle
Write meaningful messages to the loved one who has passed and place them in a bottle. This can be done with family and friends, and you can release the bottles into a body of water to symbolize your loved one’s spirit living on forever.
Make Diamonds From Ashes or Launch Ashes Into Space
If the deceased loved astronomy, science fiction, or space exploration, consider launching their ashes into space or making diamonds from their ashes. These are expensive options that are not possible for everyone, but they offer an interesting way to commemorate someone’s spirit through a once-in-a-lifetime experience.
These alternative funeral and memorial services are creative ideas for honoring the life of a loved one. In the same way that you would tailor an obituary to account for an individual’s interests, passions, and personality, you can do the same with their funeral or memorial service.