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Recreation and Remembrance

May 3, 2020

By: Adam Reeson

I’ve often said that the city of Regina, Saskatchewan is an underrated place to live. The cost of living is reasonable, the people are nice… and oh ya its also the home of the Saskatchewan Roughriders!

But beyond all of that, one of the best parts of the city is at times under-appreciated. Wascana Park is one of the largest urban parks in Canada. As the weather warms up in the Spring, thousands take a walk, go for a run or ride their bike along the scenic shores of Wascana Lake. Enjoying the park is a Queen City tradition that dates back over a century.

But, this year has taken the popularity of the park to a whole new level.

To “flatten the curve” of the COVID-19 pandemic, people have been told to stay home and avoid gathering with others whenever possible. This has caused a lot of us to go a little stir-crazy, looking for things to do to get a little exercise and get out of the house for a while. Somewhat predictably, this has made Wascana Park look like Arcola Avenue during rush hour. Even with the best of intentions, social distancing is challenging due to the sheer number of people.

To avoid the crowds, many people in Regina are getting creative by taking their recreation to an unlikely place – Riverside Memorial Park Cemetery. I’ve been going there for years for work and usually see the occasional person taking a walk and I always thought “why don’t more people walk here?”

There are paved roads and the grounds are beautifully landscaped to create a natural, peaceful environment. While I was there in late April taking measurements to match a monument for a family, a Father and his teenage daughter rode by on their bicycles. Did they feel awkward about being in a cemetery? Hardly. The two had smiles a mile wide and were having a conversation as they cycled across the cemetery.

Now, I may be a little biased because of what I do for a living, but taking a walk in a cemetery provides something most parks can’t. The opportunity to look at the different monuments adds to the experience. Nowhere else can you get some fresh air and learn about family members or community leaders.

As more and more people enjoy the recreation cemeteries have to offer, this must be a very new idea brought on by COVID-19 and social distancing, right?

Wrong.

Believe it or not, in the 19th and early part of the 20th centuries, family picnics and community gatherings often took place in North American cemeteries.

Why?

One reason was because many emerging communities lacked sufficient recreational infrastructure in those days. However, the bigger reason was that society had a different relationship with memorialization than we do today. Back then, cemeteries weren’t thought of as “creepy” places (much of that narrative is a result of how cemeteries are depicted in movies and TV shows).

Instead, cemeteries were embraced for what they were. Beautiful, peaceful settings to gather with family and friends to enjoy each other’s company and remember their loved ones.

So, when the Coronavirus eventually ends, let’s continue to re-discover our cemeteries as a place of recreation and remembrance.

I’ll be the red-headed guy in the grey Frontier shirt waving hello!

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Testimonials

  • "You were a pleasure to work with Adam and we thank you for everything you did for us, especially being a province away and doing everything via phone and email, much appreciated!"
    Sheila
    Red Deer, Alberta
  • "Adam professionally presented the products and options available. His samples were very helpful in picturing the final pillow style monument. He provided several practical suggestions with lots of detail showing his great product knowledge. He impressed me by taking our unique request and perfectly capturing it in Granite. Adam provided exceptional service and was very patient with all of my questions, thanks Adam! I highly recommend Frontier Monuments, the service and value he delivers honours the life of your loved one."
    Marc
    Regina, Saskatchewan
  • "Adam at Frontier Monuments was very good to deal with. He met with us to discuss possibilities and he made knowledgeable and helpful suggestions. He was sensitive to our needs and all information given was clearly explained. The memorial plaque was prepared and installed on time and met all of our expectations--it was beautifully done."
    Laurie
    Regina, Saskatchewan
  • "Professional, very personable. Extremely knowledgeable. Great prices and service. The marker I wanted was done to perfection. I highly recommend this company."
    Kory
    Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan
  • "I was able to stop by the cemetery and see the monument. It looks great! I am very happy with it and I'm sure the rest of the family members will be too. Thank you for all you're assistance in helping with this step. I will be sure to recommend you to others."
    Kevin
    Estevan, Saskatchewan
  • "Adam was recommended to me by a Regina funeral home. Adam was professional, sensitive and very prompt in his communications with me. As winter settled in he needed to delay the completion of the cleaning and refused my payment offer until the job was completed. Sadly, I lost my Mother in Regina over Christmas and again I reached out to Adam for a marker for her. He was so compassionate and understanding, taking care to listen and hear what my sister and myself wanted and lead us through this process. Even though I am not in Saskatchewan and due to the present situation have no ability to be there anytime soon Adam ensured the marker was created and laid the week before Mother's Day. He then sent pictures to me. So very thoughtful. "
    Kim
    British Columbia
  • "Hey Adam. Thanks for everything you did to get everything done and finished for us. Impressive job. Thanks very much."
    Doug
    Nokomis, Saskatchewan
  • "My family and I went to see the marker today, it looks perfect! My family said to thank you for your fine service."
    Carole
    Regina, Saskatchewan
  • "Through this tough process, Adam was nothing but kind and caring. This stuff is not easy but Adam and his team took care of everything and made life a little easier for my family. I definitely recommend Frontier Monuments."
    Jessica
    Raymore, Saskatchewan
  • "I wanted a unique headstone for a unique person. I created a custom design with the guidance from Adam Reeson. This was all done via the Internet since I do not live in the province in which it was to be installed. Adam cheerfully assisted me through the process with numerous suggestions of ways to improve the appearance and to cut costs. All of my numerous questions were very quickly responded to without my feeling like I was imposing on him. The result is a unique, beautiful, and everlasting tribute of which I am very proud. Thank you Adam."
    Linda
    British Columbia
  • "Our experience with Frontier Monuments and Adam was exceptional in a difficult time for the family. Adam was prompt and professional and communicated with me every step of the way. We asked for a bit of a customized monument and Adam worked with me without hesitation to get the look we wanted. The end result is exactly what we hoped for. I recommend Adam and his company without hesitation."
    Dale
    Emerald Park, Saskatchewan
  • "Thank you so much for the beautiful monument, everyone who has seen it is very impressed, as we are. Our Daughter was very impressed with you and your crew and the job you did. Thank you"
    Shirley
    Norquay, Saskatchewan
  • "Thank you very much for the great work and service that you provided for our family. I will certainly recommend you to anybody I know that needs your services."
    Des
    Regina, Saskatchewan
  • "Hi Adam, Thank you for all you did for our family. We had the burial on Sunday and the stone looks amazing. It is more than I could have asked for."
    Kerry
    Ontario
  • "Adam was excellent during this process, lots of communication so we always knew where things were at. He did a beautiful job for our family"
    Lisa
    Broadview, Saskatchewan
  • "Beautiful work... thank-you so much. Glad to have this done now. We appreciate your hard work and dedication."
    Sandra/Arlene
    Qu'appelle, Saskatchewan
  • "A pleasure to deal with, quote was very well priced and the job was done to perfection and on time. A fitting memorial to my Canadian relatives. Adam made time to meet with us when we were in Regina so we could personally thank him for a job well done. We would gladly endorse this business. "
    Sheila/Michael
    Australia
  • "We are all so pleased with the marker. It turned out exactly how we wanted and the install looks great. Thanks again for working with us. I know it has been a bit challenging given the distance between us but the end product was spot on."
    Rick
    British Columbia

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