Annual Meeting

Our Annual Membership Meetings are held in October, usually on a Sunday afternoon. These meetings are open to the public 
and always include an educational 
Program. 


Save this date:

Sunday October 20, 2019, 2-4 pm

Palmer Historical and Cultural Center
2072 Main Street, Three Rivers, MA

Caskets and Coffins and Shrouds, Oh My!
with Carol’s “Five-Fold Path to Funeral Contentment” to ease your fears.

We’ll have a show-and-tell about caskets including “green” options, fancy
commercially-available ones, and simpler examples. We’ve invited Lenny Weake to repeat his "Caskets 101” show that was well-received in Palmer last fall. We’ve invited Ruth Faas to show cardboard caskets that can be decorated creatively by loved ones, and Dina Stander to display her “Last Dance Shrouds.” We hope also to have willow coffins woven by Mary Lauren Fraser. Carol Coan will share her helpful five-step strategy for making final arrangements.

Don’t miss this! 

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Last year's program:

Answering Consumer Questions

Which Cemeteries Allow Green Burial? 
See a demonstration of the new online directory being created by Green Burial Massachusetts, with help from FCAWM volunteers. Come hear what we are learning as we survey cemeteries. Learn how you can help complete this project.

Role of Clerks in Family-directed Death Care?  FCAWM is reaching out to Town & City Clerks to be sure they support families in  submitting information to the Commonwealth’s required Electronic Death Registration System (EDRS).  

How Much Will Cremation Cost? Or Burial?
Our 2018 Price Comparison report is now ready, with data from 54 funeral homes in our region. Come pickup a printed copy, or view the report online. 


Bring YOUR questions! We welcome questions and are glad to share what we have learned in this important volunteer work.

Light refreshments will be served.

A brief Business Meeting will preceed the Program.  

Rockridge Retirement Community, 25 Coles Meadow Rd, Northampton, MA 


More details about this program are in our Fall newsletter


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2017 program:

Sunday, October 15, 2017, 2:00-4:00 pm

Annual Meeting and Program

Rockridge Retirement Community, 25 Coles Meadow Rd, Northampton, MA  

Answering Questions about Cemeteries

How far in advance to buy a plot? What is the likely cost of a plot? 
If my family has an extra plot, what are the options for selling or donating it? Who makes policy decisions about a cemetery? Who will maintain it? 
What monuments or ornaments are allowed? What are “opening and closing” costs and policies?
Why do some cemeteries require “vaults” or grave liners? Who keeps track of burial records? What happens when a cemetery runs out of space? Could old plots be recycled, as done in parts of Europe?

Come hear knowledgeable panelists answer these and related questions. 

  • Joshua Slocum, Executive Director, Funeral Consumers Alliance
  • Carol Coan, Cofounder of Green Burial MA; Caretaker, Mt. Toby Friends Burial Ground
  • Joan Pillsbury, Member of Gill Cemetery Commission; Board member of Green Burial MA and FCAWM. 

Bring your friends, and your questions. 
Refreshments will be served.

A brief FCAWM Annual Meeting (electing trustees) will precede the program. 

See Fall 2017 newsletter for articles about cemeteries, and for more about our special guest Joshua Slocum.

See Spring 2018 newsletter for 2-page report of the Questions asked by the audience and Answers given by the panelists.

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See our Annual Meetings Archive for program topics and photos of past years.