Click on the links below for answers to our most frequently asked questions:
What is a conservation cemetery?
Conservation burial is natural burial that goes a step further to conserve land. A portion of each burial fee is committed to pay for land acquisition, protection, restoration, and management. The burial area also becomes hallowed ground, restored to its natural condition and protected forever with a conservation easement. Native plants beautify the burial sites.
Those who support conservation are offered a more meaningful burial option with the certainty that protected land is the ultimate legacy to leave for future generations. Families and friends are brought closer to nature in the commemoration of their loved one’s life. The Green Burial Council offers certifications for organizations offering green burial related services. Find more information on their website.
How is the land protected and conserved?
In addition to being an established cemetery, PCCC’s land is protected by a conservation easement. Our easement is a contractual document with Alachua County prescribing how the land is to be managed, preventing development in perpetuity. The cemetery is further protected as a part of Prairie Creek Preserve, which is contiguous with Paynes Prairie State Park.
What is a typical burial like?
No two burials at PCCC are alike. The basic steps however, are generally the same. After a location is selected, staff and volunteers come the day before the burial to dig the grave by hand. On the day of the burial everyone gathers in the cemetery, and typically uses our Amish burial cart to process with the body to the gravesite.
Once at the gravesite, anyone who wishes may help to place the body over the gravesite. Family and friends then have whatever ceremony that is meaningful to them. Most share in stories, prayer, and reflection together; others bring musicians or religious leaders. When everyone is ready, those who wish to participate will join in lowering the body into the earth. Then everyone, starting with the family, is invited to ceremoniously place a handful or shovelful of earth into the grave.
After this, all who would like are welcome to help staff and volunteers fill in the grave. When the grave is filled, a mound is formed, which is covered with pine straw and the brass memorial marker PCCC provides.
Who can be buried here?
Burial at Prairie Creek Conservation Cemetery (PCCC) is available to all people, regardless of race, creed, color, religious beliefs, national origin, gender, or political affiliation. We do burials for bodies and cremated remains.
What does it cost? How do the fees work?
The fees associated with burial at PCCC are for the opening and closing of the grave. Prices are as follows: $2,000 for a whole body burial and $650 for burial of cremated remains. For more information about pricing, follow this link.
Can I scatter my loved one's ashes here?
Ashes may not be scattered at PCCC. However, you can bury ashes, which establishes a grave site one can visit. When burying ashes, they must either be in a biodegradable container or poured into the gravesite. As with whole body burials, we provide a two-inch brass marker for burials of all cremated remains.
Can you transport my loved one for me?
No. Because we are a cemetery there are certain duties we are legally not allowed to perform. For a burial at PCCC you will only need a funeral home’s most basic services: refrigeration, transportation of the body, and completion of the state paperwork. We will work with any funeral home. For a list of funeral service providers who have already worked with PCCC follow this link.
Must I use a funeral home?
How are graves marked?
Graves are marked in two ways. The first is with a two-inch brass disk provided for every burial. Markers are custom stamped by our staff, and placed on the grave at the end of the burial. A typical marker shows the deceased’s name, birthdate, and death date. The second way a grave’s location is marked is by GPS. Our staff measures the coordinates of every grave in the cemetery so that your loved one’s grave can always be found.
How can I find a specific grave site at PCCC?
What can I leave on my loved one’s grave?
Memorial objects and plant material may remain on a grave for one week after burial. After one week, plant materials and other organic items will be composted. Items of value will be donated to an appropriate charitable organization. Family members should not expect to recover objects, as PCCC will not be responsible for items left on the graves or cemetery grounds.
Can I plant a tree on my loved one’s site?
Regionally native plants from PCCC’s Native Plant Program may be planted on or around a grave site. The type of plant you choose will be determined in part by the location of the grave. To learn more about our donation-based program, follow this link.
Can I buy/pick a spot now?
PCCC cannot take payment before death occurs, but there are options for those who want to plan ahead. Our Burial Preference form, when completed and returned to us, acts as a general reservation for a space in the cemetery. While you cannot choose a specific site ahead of time, you can indicate on the form the general area where you would prefer to be buried. Hospice patients may select a specific site at any time. For more information about planning, follow this link.
Can I be buried next to my loved one?
A specific site may be reserved if your spouse/partner or your minor child is buried in the cemetery. Specific site reservations may only be made with a Burial Preference form.
How deep are graves?
How large are plots?
Every grave site is 10x15 ft. There is only room for one body per plot, but multiple cremains burials can fit in a plot.
Can my family help dig our loved one’s grave?
Absolutely! At PCCC we encourage you to be involved to whatever extent is meaningful for you. If you are interested in helping dig your loved one’s grave, please let us know so we can schedule the digging at a time that works for all.
Is there a Jewish section?
PCCC does not have any exclusive areas for any single group of people. There is however, an archway which was erected in the cemetery to facilitate some Jewish burial practices. The space around the arch serves as a non-exclusive area where many Jewish people have been or plan to be buried, and allows for non-Jewish spouses or partners to be buried in the same place. A photo of the arch can be seen here.