Cemetery Etiquette: Tips for Visiting a Cemetery

When visiting a cemetery, there are a number of basic rules you should keep in mind.  If you’re choosing to visit a gravesite, there are some critical rules of etiquette to understand to make the experience easier.  We want to ensure you and your fellow visitors enjoy a courteous, peaceful experience.  Let’s look at five essential rules of etiquette:

Bring Down the Volume

The cemetery is intended to be a quiet space for thoughtful reflection.  This means refraining from loud talking or laughing so as to not disturb other guests.  Try to avoid having telephone calls as voices tend to carry in open spaces.  Consider taking a moment to check that your cellphone is turned off or set to silent mode.  If you decide to drive through the cemetery, please turn off your car stereo while behind the wheel or parking.

Clean Up After Yourself

Landscaping crews maintain cemeteries.  Do you part to help keep them looking well-kept and cared for.  Leaving trash behind not only creates extra work for caretakers but also disrespects visitors and those who are interred there.

Avoid Standing or Walking on Graves

Gravesites are considered to be the final resting place of individuals.  Therefore, it is expected that they be respected.  Do not stand on or walk across the graves.  Rather, stick to designated walkways or paths to reduce the risk of damaging gravesites.

Obey the Hours

Our grounds are open to the public free of charge 7 days a week from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.  Note that these hours are subject to change in the event of inclement weather or high winds.  It is important that you do not remain in the cemetery beyond the posted hours to avoid trespassing.

Talk Softly and Politely

This is part of being courteous to other mourners.  Remember to keep your voice down while having conversations.  Similarly, as a  matter of respect, avoid using foul language.

Beautiful, peaceful, and serene, Woodlawn continues to be a place for quiet reflection.  Visiting a gravesite is an opportunity to feel connected to your loved one.  As such, you want to ensure that you follow specific rules of etiquette to enhance the experience for everyone in the space.  By following these simple rules, you will show respect for the living and the deceased.