Talking About Urns and Caskets

Spreading Cremation Ashes: Helpful Tips

Post-cremation plans sometimes involve spreading the ashes of a loved one. Sometimes, this practice is brought about based on the deceased's desires or is initiated by the family to help honor their loved one. Whatever the case, attention to detail is required when preparing for this process.

Discover Options

Sit down with someone at the funeral or cremation home or facility to learn about your options. Some funeral homes help families plan scattering ceremonies. These services can include the traditional spreading process, known as a casting ceremony, in which the ashes are just released into the air by the wind, or a ranking ceremony, in which the ashes are spread across a flower bed or soil. Discussing your options should be the first step in the planning process.

Research the Law

Find out what restrictions are in place when it comes to the spreading of ashes. Unless your plans include spreading them on your or a family member's property, you should not automatically assume you can. Instead, you need to seek approval first. National parks and vast waterways, such as a lake or oceans, often permit this practice, but you must notify the agency responsible for the property beforehand. Private businesses like sports stadiums typically do not authorize this practice.

Plan Wisely

If your plans involve scattering the ashes in a traditional casting ceremony or any outdoor space, plan the ceremony with the weather in mind. Always pick a time of the year when the weather is typically mild. Periods with high precipitation and wind are never a good thing. This type of weather will prevent the ashes from scattering correctly, which can put a damper on the occasion. If you plan to spread the ashes in an area away from your home, check the local weather patterns there.

Travel with Care

Additionally, if your plans include travel, you must handle the cremated ashes carefully. First, it is recommended that you have the cremation service place your loved one in a secure urn to make travel safe. Second, place the urn in a bag with a label, and if you plan to store it in your carry-on bag, let the airport security agent know before your bag goes into a scanner. This information will prove helpful in the event your bag must be checked.

Remember all these tips and remember that a cremation professional can also provide you with helpful details on this topic. Do not hesitate to ask for assistance. 

Contact a local cremation service like Simple Choices Inc.  to learn more.