My former colleague, Andrea Brown, wrote a piece in 2007 about how her family kept the ashes of her mother-in-law, Grandma Brown, in a cardboard urn in a linen closet.
It was a funny piece. Read it here. Of course, Andrea often made me laugh. Even when she didn’t mean to.
Anyway, I thought of Andrea and Grandma Brown when I learned what other folks do with the cremated remains of their relatives.
Turns out, lots of folks spread ashes around Colorado Springs parks, trails and even golf courses.
In fact, back in 1995, maintenance crews at Patty Jewett Golf Course, found a strange-looking substance spread on the 17th green.
Dal Lockwood, manager of the city’s golf enterprise, tells the story:
“There was a fair amount of stuff spread all over the greens. One of our old guys, an old sage, tasted it. He said it tasted salty. We had it tested. It was cremated remains.”
Wonder if it tasted like chicken?
Anyway, it’s a pretty common practice, as I learned. City parks, trails and golf courses get used for a lot of things besides the obvious.
Of course, weddings are a common activity especially during spring and summer. Some places must be reserved for a fee. Learn more here.
Topping the list are the Garden of the Gods and Grandview Overlook in Palmer Park, says Kurt Schroeder, parks, trails and open space manager for the city parks department.
Both parks offer inspiring views and spectacular backdrops for ceremonies and photos.
Some prefer getting hitched atop Pikes Peak with the panorama of the city as their backdrop.
Others like the American Mothers Chapel at Rock Ledge Ranch or the
Heritage Garden in Monument Valley Park.
The gazebo and pond at Nancy Lewis Park is a favorite spot for tying the knot. The splashing waters of Helen Hunt Falls in Cheyenne Cañon attract some for their nuptials while others exchange vows at the Red Rock Canyon Open Space pavilion.
And there have been plenty of wedding receptions of Patty Jewett.
“The Garden of the Gods is probably the place the most ashes are scattered,” said Paul Butcher, retired parks department director. “We’ve always had hearsay stories that people scatter ashes in Garden of the Gods, Palmer Park and from the top of Pikes Peak. It happens. We never encouraged it. But I’m 100 percent sure people have done it.”
Here’s a link to a video about Patty Jewett Golf Course.