Category Archives: Cremation

Final Arrangements…and I do mean final!

Regardless of whether one prearranges for their cemetery and funeral needs (advance planning) or leaves such arrangements to those left behind (at-need), this article will offer some basic guidelines.  When friends, relatives or new acquaintances find out that I work at a cemetery, the questions come with the main question being, “How much does it cost?”

To answer this question, I would have to ask a lot of questions in return, throwing the hot potato back at them.  “How much does a house cost, or a car, or an engagement ring or even something as simple as a dozen eggs.”  What is this guy talking about?  Take the eggs, for example.  Are they plain old, average sized eggs?  Are they jumbo sized?  Are they from free range chickens?  And that is just trying to get to the answer of how much do eggs cost.

A better approach to the question of the price of a funeral and cemetery arrangements is to let a person know that they should not spend any more than is necessary to meet their needs, or their budget.  And a budget is a funny thing as it was just proven during the government shut-down that most Americans are but a couple of paychecks away from being unable to meet their financial needs.  Sadly, a great many of the people that come to us unprepared are shocked at the cost of dying.  They lose the luxury of choice.  If one does not have pre-needed their cemetery and funeral arrangements, have guaranteed insurance money to be available when they die, or they outlive their income, or if they have huge medical bills that empty the money stash set aside for a rainy day, they are out of luck.

So, setting the actual cost aside, lets explore all that is necessary to make complete cemetery and funeral arrangements.  By the way, when it comes to funerals, the Federal Trade Commission requires funeral homes give you a copy of their price list when at a funeral home in person, or give you pricing on the phone when asked.

First, what do you want?  Do you want traditional ground burial at a cemetery?  If so, you will need a grave space, an outer container that the casket goes in, and an opening/closing of the grave.  In addition, most people that select ground burial want to place an above ground monument or at least flush memorials that mark the location of a loved one forever.

At the funeral home, most people that choose ground burial want to have a visitation with viewing followed by a funeral committal service at their cemetery.  A committal service is when you commit your loved one to a final resting place.  In Indiana, a funeral director must be present any time a burial takes place with people gathered to say goodbye.  For a funeral service with visitation, a casket would be necessary.  Also, supporting products go hand-in-hand when a funeral is arranged which may include a register book for guests to sign in, prayer cards and envelopes, flowers and quite often, food and drinks.

When you add all of these things together, the average cost of cemetery and funeral goods and services is around $12-$15,000.  Think of planning a wedding, and all of the costs involved.  From a venue, to rings, to wedding dress and attire for the wedding party, to food and music and photography, to guest lists and places for them to stay, to invitations and more.  Most weddings today run $20,000 and more…generally, a lot more.

A wedding is one of life’s biggest events and the final “biggest event” is one’s funeral.  There are many of the same types of things to arrange as a wedding.  The venue (what funeral home and what cemetery), the announcement (obituary), clothing for the decedent and for family that plan on attending, to music and clergy and on-and-on.  Now days, people want a funeral to be an experience and not just a cookie-cutter service that is just like every other funeral they have ever attended.

There will be a lifetime of grieving and learning to live without the deceased loved one.  A funeral is meant as a chance to gather with friends and family and celebrate the life that was lived.  When a person passes, they do not just disappear from the world and from our memories.  We all have a circle of friends and family that will also be grieving and that need a chance to say goodbye.  Believe me, there is nothing that shouts louder that a parent or child or spouse or friend is gone than to see them lying in state.

Arrangements that funeral homes and cemeteries provide are based on the cumulative needs of any given population.  In NW Indiana, seventy percent of the population still want a traditional funeral service followed by interment or entombment in a cemetery.  The other 30% select cremation.  Sometimes cremation is chosen because of money, sometimes for religious reasons and sometimes for ecological reasons.  Regardless, many of those that go with cremation still want and still need a chance to say a proper goodbye.  For those folks, they still want a traditional funeral service with all the trappings, to be followed by cremation.

Once the cremation is complete, the cremains (ashes) will be returned to the family for final disposition.  That can be as simple as keeping them at home, or letting them blow in the wind, or scattered over Lake Michigan.  But so many people have a need to be able to know where their loved one will be for eternity and want a place of peace and reverence that they can visit when the need arises “just to be near” their loved one.

Calumet Park, recent winner of the best cemetery in the country for 2018, has many, many possibilities that meet the needs, the wants and the pocket book of all who come to us.

Rather than try to make a list of meaningless pricing, you are invited to stop in at your convenience and one of our funeral directors or one of our family service people will be happy to take you on a tour of our facilities, and answer all of your questions.  In addition, they can tailor an event, whether grandiose or simple, and give you exact pricing.  It would be then in your hands to decide if you wanted to prearrange and freeze the price or go home and at least know what you would be up against financially to get what will best meet your needs.

Call 219-769-8803 to arrange a personal meeting with one of our professional staff members.  And remember that is better to have your arrangements and not need them than to need them and not be able to afford them.

 

Comments Off on Final Arrangements…and I do mean final!

Filed under Calumet Park Cemetery, Calumet Park Cemetery in Merrillville Indiana, Calumet Park Funeral Chapel in Merrillville Indiana, Calumet Park Funeral Chapel of Hobart and Portage, Calumet Park Funeral Home, Cremation, feature stories, Funerals, Rendina Funeral Home, veterans at calumet Park cemetery

Top cemetery in the country awarded to Calumet Park Cemetery from American Cemetery and Cremation magazine…

ACE Winner  Click here for the article announcing Calumet Park Cemetery as the winner of the best cemetery in the country.  Thanks to all the employees and owners of Calumet Park Cemetery.  It is due to the dedication and true spirit of service to our neighbors that inspires the Calumet team to be the best.  Like the Wizard of Oz, we always knew that we had a brain, a heart and courage, and now we have bragging rights that our feelings about what we do is officially recognized.   Calumet Park has received runner-up awards a number of times so it is appreciated to be the recipient of this honor from the American Cemetery and Cremation magazine (celebrating their 90th anniversary just as Calumet Park Cemetery is doing the same…both founded in 1928).

For info on prearranging you cemetery and funeral needs, call 219-769-8803.

Comments Off on Top cemetery in the country awarded to Calumet Park Cemetery from American Cemetery and Cremation magazine…

Filed under About Us, Calumet Park Cemetery, Calumet Park Cemetery in Merrillville Indiana, Calumet Park Funeral Chapel in Merrillville Indiana, Calumet Park Funeral Chapel of Hobart and Portage, Calumet Park Funeral Home, Cremation, feature stories, Funeral home, Rendina Funeral Home, veterans at calumet Park cemetery

Coming soon to Calumet Park Cemetery…two new niche columbariums overlooking the Meditation Pond…

Watch this space to see when the new columbarium project will be available for sale.  A columbarium is a bank of niches that are designed as permanent placement of the cremains of a loved one after cremation.  Each of these spaces will accommodate the ashes of either one or two cremains.  The personal information will go on the black granite niche fronts.  There are 160 individual niches.  They are set between the bridge at the Meditation Pond and the gazebo.  During the spring, summer and early fall seasons there is a fountain in the pond which will offer a quiet place of contemplation and remembrance for families that choose this new addition to Calumet Park Cemetery’s constantly growing inventory of peaceful and beautiful final resting places for our departed ones.

There will be a stream surrounding the Columbariums with a waterfalls and bridges to get to this small but beautiful island paradise.

For information on this or any of the many wonderful choices for the cremation-oriented families that we serve, please call 219-769-8803 or stop in for a tour of the new facility.

 

Comments Off on Coming soon to Calumet Park Cemetery…two new niche columbariums overlooking the Meditation Pond…

Filed under Calumet Park Cemetery, Calumet Park Cemetery in Merrillville Indiana, Calumet Park Funeral Chapel in Merrillville Indiana, Calumet Park Funeral Chapel of Hobart and Portage, Calumet Park Funeral Home, Cremation, feature stories, Funeral home, mausoleums, Rendina Funeral Home, Uncategorized, Veterans benefits

Memorial Weekend Events at Calumet Park Cemetery….

We hope to see you all at the cemetery over Memorial Weekend.  Following is a list of scheduled events:

May 27, Saturday at 7:00 p.m. – free fireworks show with free hayrides and horse and buggy rides

May 28, Sunday at 1:00 p.m. – veterans memorial service with the American Legion 1st District, Rep. Visclosky to speak

May 29, Monday at 10:00 there will be a Catholic Service, a St. Sava Serbian Orthodox Service, and a Bethel church in Hobart-Portage service

May 29, Monday at 11:30 there will be a SS Constantine and Helen Greek Orthodox Service

Sale:  20% off all pre-need graves, 15% off all monuments and markers and 25% off the Veteran Memorial Columbarium niches

The sale runs through May 31 so if you are in need of any of these sales items, stop in and see how much you can save by acting now.  Zero interest payment plans available

For directions or if you have any questions, call 219-769-8803

Hope to see you over the weekend.  Be safe and enjoy the unofficial beginning of summer.

Comments Off on Memorial Weekend Events at Calumet Park Cemetery….

Filed under Calumet Park Cemetery, Calumet Park Cemetery in Merrillville Indiana, Calumet Park Funeral Chapel in Merrillville Indiana, Calumet Park Funeral Chapel of Hobart and Portage, Calumet Park Funeral Home, Cremation, Events, feature stories, Funeral home, private mausoleum, Rendina Funeral Home, veterans at calumet Park cemetery

Easter is just around the corner…

Comments Off on Easter is just around the corner…

April 5, 2017 · 1:59 pm

Calumet Park Cemetery in Merrillville adds casket display area that is family friendly…

2017-01-17-21-37-34 2017-01-17-21-37-57 2017-01-17-21-38-30 2017-01-17-21-38-54 2017-01-17-21-39-15 2017-01-17-21-39-53 2017-01-17-21-40-05 2017-01-17-21-40-53 2017-01-17-21-41-01 2017-01-17-21-41-22 2017-01-17-21-41-48 2017-01-17-21-42-13 2017-01-17-21-42-36 2017-01-17-21-43-06 2017-01-17-21-43-35 2017-01-17-21-43-58 2017-01-17-21-44-05 2017-01-17-21-44-17 2017-01-17-21-44-27 2017-01-17-21-44-53-2 2017-01-17-21-44-53-6 2017-01-17-21-45-52 2017-01-17-21-46-24 2017-01-17-21-47-00 2017-01-17-21-47-08 2017-01-17-21-47-52 2017-01-17-21-48-02 2017-01-17-21-48-43 2017-01-17-21-48-56Calumet Park Cemetery in Merrillville recently added a casket display area at the cemetery.  There are so many people wishing to pre-arrange their cemetery and funeral needs that it has become a must to have a place that they can see the actual caskets and fabrics for the interior without having to go to a local funeral home.

You may click on any photo to enlarge it to see the detail of design and color.  All the caskets shown are Batesville caskets made in the USA in Batesville, Indiana.  Batesville is one of the oldest and biggest casket manufacturing companies in the country.  They are highly respected and admired for the quality and variety of their products, from simple to “how much?”  There is literally a design that meets all budgets.

Stop in for a free tour of the room and consider preplanning with Calumet Park using our interest free monthly payment plans, and do not forget to ask about our veteran program.

Call 219-769-8803, or stop by any of our locations as shown on our website http://calumetparkcemetery.com

Comments Off on Calumet Park Cemetery in Merrillville adds casket display area that is family friendly…

Filed under Calumet Park Cemetery, Calumet Park Cemetery in Merrillville Indiana, Calumet Park Funeral Chapel in Merrillville Indiana, Calumet Park Funeral Chapel of Hobart and Portage, Calumet Park Funeral Home, Cremation, feature stories, Funeral home, Preneed, Rendina Funeral Home, Uncategorized, veterans at calumet Park cemetery, Veterans benefits

New Calumet Park Funeral Home in Hobart has ribbon cutting ceremony with the Chamber’s of Commerce of Hobart and Portage…

On December 15 the Chamber of Commerce for both Hobart and Portage joined together in a ribbon cutting ceremony at Calumet Park Funeral Chapel in Hobart.  the funeral home is located just south of Ridge Road on County Line Road between Hobart and Portage.  Considering the day was the coldest of the year to that point, a nice turn-out of local businesses and residents stopped by for the ceremony.

Location supervisor Roy McNeal and his assistant, Mike Poweska, had the newly renovated funeral home looking great.  The entire Board of Directors joined in the ceremony, with gifts handed out to all attendees.  Hobart Mayor, Brian Snedecor welcomed Calumet Park to the business community, and both Lisa Winstead from Hobart and Nancy Simpson from Portage shared some thoughts as the ribbon was cut making Calumet Park an official member of the community.

Stop by anytime for a private tour of the facility and meet the staff.  For more info, call 219-940-3791.

2016-12-15-04-05-58 2016-12-15-04-06-24 2016-12-15-04-06-33 2016-12-15-04-08-01 2016-12-15-04-08-31 2016-12-15-04-08-43 2016-12-15-04-11-16 2016-12-15-04-11-32 2016-12-15-04-14-40 2016-12-15-04-15-20 2016-12-15-04-23-49 2016-12-15-04-28-04 2016-12-15-04-36-34 2016-12-15-04-38-04 2016-12-15-04-41-12 2016-12-15-04-46-23 2016-12-15-04-52-01 2016-12-15-05-01-10 2016-12-15-05-01-23 2016-12-15-05-01-44 2016-12-15-05-02-20 2016-12-15-05-02-33 2016-12-15-05-04-04 2016-12-15-05-10-36 2016-12-15-05-12-37 2016-12-15-05-15-55

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Comments Off on New Calumet Park Funeral Home in Hobart has ribbon cutting ceremony with the Chamber’s of Commerce of Hobart and Portage…

Filed under Calumet Park Cemetery, Calumet Park Cemetery in Merrillville Indiana, Calumet Park Funeral Chapel of Hobart and Portage, Calumet Park Funeral Home, Cremation, Events, Funeral home, Preneed, Rendina Funeral Home, Uncategorized, veterans at calumet Park cemetery

Funerals…as simple or as elaborate as you choose….

Funeral-Services-6501

Call us at 219-769-8803 for a personal and private meeting to get your questions on funeral planning answered.  If we knew the day of our death, almost everyone would become involved in the planning of their own funeral.  Luckily, we don’t know the when, but we can do something about what our final goodbye will look like and how much will be spent.

Comments Off on Funerals…as simple or as elaborate as you choose….

Filed under Calumet Park Cemetery, Calumet Park Cemetery in Merrillville Indiana, Calumet Park Funeral Chapel in Merrillville Indiana, Calumet Park Funeral Home, Cremation, feature stories, Rendina Funeral Home, Veterans benefits

Sometimes it costs you more to get what you don’t want…

100dollars

Years ago, I bought a Porsche 944.  I wanted a Porsche 911, but there was no way that I could afford one, so I settled for the 944.  Within four months, it seemed that all I saw were 911’s until I went back to the dealer and asked how I could upgrade.  Not counting the fact that the payment was way higher on the 911, it cost me a small fortune to get out of the cheaper Porsche.  But, my heart was set on the 911 and the heck with the cost; I went with my heart.

thCMFZ3POF

I was reminded of my car buying experience the other day when I overheard one of our family service counselors talking with a husband about the monument he had erected for his wife who passed away a few months earlier.  It seems they were married for a long time, and they did everything for each other.  It came across as a true love story, and in passing, the gentleman mentioned how much he regretted buying a small monument for his wife.  It bothered him every time he came out to the cemetery to visit her grave.

026

The family service counselor responded to this moment of emotional outreach with the suggestion of upgrading to a monument that the husband felt would be more fitting of the life he and his wife shared.  To meet the needs of the husband, a monument of greater stature and significance was arranged for, and the family service counselor could see the tension being released from this man’s face as he finalized the purchase.  In matters of the heart, money is secondary to getting what you truly want.  The fact is that you should have your final wishes designed and paid for in advance to avoid anyone from spending on something that you don’t want.

When looking at the laws written for this business, you will see the word disposition used quite heavily.  Very clinical sounding, right?  Who has the legal right of disposition is a question that must be answered when you go to your cemetery of choice to sign an interment/entombment/inurnment order.  Regardless of the name given to the document, the form is to be signed by the person who is determined to have the legal right to dispose of a human body, and what form that disposition will take.

Sadly, in many cases where there is disharmony in a family, the one with the love in their heart for the deceased is not always the one who has the right to make decisions on final arrangements of the decedent.  Quite often, the person with the legal right of disposition acts out of spite, or dislike, or down right hatred.  The courts do not make their judgments based on relationships but rather on who fits their mold of how things should go.

Ah ha!  Doesn’t sound so nice when you come to realize that disposition is a word that, as far as a cemetery or funeral home is concerned, means ‘how will you dispose of the body…the mortal remains… of that person you are being asked to sign for’.   In fact, the state has written laws on the right of disposition that defines the order of priority when it comes to disposing of the human body.  You can pick up a copy of this Order of Priority at any funeral home, cemetery or from Calumet Park Cemetery by calling 219-769-8803.  In fact, just a few short years ago the State of Indiana passed into law a bill that allows the individual to decide who will dispose of their body.  It is called a Funeral Planning Declaration and you can pick one up at Calumet Park Cemetery, 2305 West 73rd Avenue, Merrillville, Indiana 46410.

There is a lot of legal gobbledygook that must be trudged through when a person dies.  That is what your funeral director or cemeterian handles as part of their service to you and your family.   Taking care of the legal side of things when a person passes is only a portion of the challenge that is faced within hours of a death by the person found to have the legal right to make such decisions.  Making decisions as to burial or cremation…cemetery and funeral home…traditional ground burial or above ground entombment…private or public visitation…and on and on and on…is challenging to say the least.

Every decision comes with a side of doubt when you, as the body in question, did nothing to help make life easier for those left behind.  When you die, your problems are over.  However, for those left behind, the 72 hours following your death will be made more painful and confusing when they do not know what you would have wanted, or how much you would want to spend, or how little there is in the bank account to spend on your funeral.  As I write these words, a family service counselor is distraught over having to deal with a person with no money, and no right to do anything even if money were not an issue let alone being able to have a proper goodbye for her loved one.  So sad!

The best advice I could give to anyone after being in this line of work for so many years is to think about your own inevitable passing.  What would you want to happen to your body?  What kind of funeral service do you want?  How much money do you want to spend or how much money is available to be spent?  Money and dignity have little to do with one another.  You can have a surprisingly beautiful final goodbye without breaking the bank or taking food off the table.  But to do this, you are the one who needs to make the decisions.  Since none of us know the time or day of our eventual demise, when would be a better time to pay a visit to Calumet Park but now, while you are still able to?

As the title of this article states, sometimes it costs you more to get what you don’t want.  If you don’t want a public extravaganza, don’t let it happen by arranging your own funeral.  If you don’t want a very expensive mahogany casket, come in and arrange for the casket that you do want.  If you don’t want cremation (or if you do), take a couple of hours and sit with one of our family service counselors and seek their advice.  It is always better for you to have things prearranged and then forget about it until the time of need rather than have a need and force others to try and figure out what you would have wanted, and how they will pay for it.  Last year, the average cost of one complete funeral and cemetery arrangement was around $12,000 to $15,000.  The spread in price has to do mostly with the casket selection.

2013-03-28 08.26.50

If you always secretly wanted to be in a mausoleum, come in and find out how affordable it is rather than be buried in the ground and later be disinterred and put in a mausoleum when your secret somehow surfaces after you are gone.  Let your family know what you want.  You can prearrange exactly how you want things to go, and how much you will spend, and you can do it with interest free payments at Calumet Park Cemetery on a pre-need basis.  Wait until after a death, and no payment programs are available and choices may be limited.

Look at it this way, if you know you are going to use Calumet Park Cemetery when the time comes, do you think it would be wiser to arrange now, at today’s prices, or to leave it to your family?  Sure, you will still end up here at Northwest Indiana’s most beautiful Memorial Park, but at whose expense?  Call us now for a no obligation look-see at what your funeral will be like, and if you want to do everything at once, or piece your final arrangements together in smaller, more affordable segments, you will be the one in charge.

Truth be told, most cemeteries and funeral homes would rather have you wait so you will pay the going rate at the time of need.  This is especially true during these times of low interest returns on investments.  Calumet Park has a pre-need program to help us plan for the future needs of the community.  By having a feeling as to how many people will use us based on actuarial statistics and other boring stuff, you have the opportunity to have your money put in trust at today’s prices which may make the difference in your getting your cemetery version of a Porsche 911 or a 944…both good but one markedly better.  Call now at 219-769-8803 and visit our website at calumetparkcemetery.com

Comments Off on Sometimes it costs you more to get what you don’t want…

Filed under Calumet Park Cemetery, Cremation, elder law, feature stories, Preneed

In the works for the future…

new lake

Design 0390-B – Merrillville, IN (2)

A man-made pond has been excavated just south of the original mausoleum at Calumet Park Cemetery in Merrillville, Indiana.    The development of a beautiful space to design a private mausoleum program is evolving as either one or two (as shown in artist’s rendition) fountains in the new pond will serve as the centerpiece of the new “neighborhood”.

The west side of the development will have a tastefully designed community mausoleum.   There will be niches for cremation and a paved and landscaped road that will offer access to the new development.  The community mausoleum will have an inside chapel for committal services or when visiting on inclement weather days.  Each of the private mausoleums will be unique and be produced for the exact needs of each family wishing to set up this sort of estate.  Below you may see some ideas for your very own final resting place that may trigger your thoughts on the possibilities.  You will be able to choose from private mausoleums that already have already been produced or you may start from scratch and work with one of our specialists in coming up with a look that is just right for you.

 Get on our mailing list by emailing  newsletter@calumetparkcemetery.com and in the subject portion of your email put add me to email list and in the message portion give us your name, address, zip and phone.  We will update you on this and other projects as they develop.

alex maus8761233_origmanov_fullMINOLTA DIGITAL CAMERA05CB015735private-mausoleum-9private maus 1images

Call 219-769-8803 for more information!

scott6

Comments Off on In the works for the future…

Filed under Calumet Park Cemetery, Calumet Park Cemetery in Merrillville Indiana, Cremation, feature stories, mausoleums, private mausoleum