The City of Vernon is reminding residents of changes being implemented regarding floral tributes and other memorial items at Pleasant Valley Cemetery.
Between March 15 and Oct. 15, only fresh-cut floral arrangements may be placed on plots, and between Oct. 16 and March 14, potted plants, wreaths, artificial floral arrangements, and seasonal floral tributes may be placed on plots.
All floral arrangements must be placed in approved tribute holders. These holders are available for purchase through the cemetery office, located at Vernon City Hall.
Non-floral items (trinkets) placed at an interment site – including but not limited to ceramics, statuary, frames, photographs, glass, boxes, shells, toys, wire screens, baskets or stands – are not permitted on plots and will be respectfully removed.
In regard to funeral flowers, any type of floral tribute is permitted on the day of the service and for a period of seven days following the interment.
“The city recognizes that many artificial or non-floral tributes are currently placed at the Pleasant Valley Cemetery,” said city staff in a release. “To provide time for families to visit the cemetery and collect items they wish to keep, the city is providing a grace period until March 14, 2023, to remove items that are no longer permitted on gravesites.”
In 2019, the City of Vernon cemetery master plan and bylaw were adopted for the Pleasant Valley Cemetery. The master plan was developed to enhance the sustainability of the city’s cemetery services and offer an implementation plan for improved cemetery operations, policies and practices.
These changes align with the operation practices of many cemeteries across British Columbia and Canada, said the city, and take into consideration the safety of the public and cemetery caretakers, maintenance operations, and environmental impacts.
“The City of Vernon understands and respects the need for families to honour loved ones through the placement of offerings at gravesites,” said the release. “This is part of the grieving and healing process. The city welcomes these tributes, within the regulations and guidelines that are listed above, and which are common in many other communities.”
For more information, visit www.vernon.ca/cemetery.