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My friend Diana was kind enough to go to Spring Grove Cemetery and Arboretum in Cincinnati and pick up their 2011 calendar. (The calendar is free, but a $5 donation is suggested. I need to drop a check in the mail to them.) The concept behind the calendar was kind of interesting – the photographs were chosen from a competition pool created by the cemetery’s Facebook fans. A lot of the photos are visually well-composed and striking.

On the other hand, the overall effect is more like a calendar of photographs that just happened to be taken in a cemetery rather than a calendar about the cemetery. Monuments are rather static or at least very slow to erode, so the decision about which photos to include for which months seemed motivated more by what was happening with the grounds around the monuments – the photos for the winter months feature snow and ice, spring and summer have explosions of floral blossoms, and fall has the dramatic reds, oranges and yellows of changing leaves. In some photos, you almost can’t tell you are looking at a cemetery.

The calendar does include dates of planned events for the whole year, which would be great for a cemetery enthusiast in the local area. I don’t know if I will make a special trip down to southwest Ohio just for one of those events but who knows?

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I just received my electronic copy of the Woodland Journal, the newsletter of the Woodland Cemetery Foundation. For those of you ready to mark your calendars for 2011, I wanted to post these dates here from their website.

May 21, 22, & 28, 2011 – Decorating Veterans’ Graves
May 30, 2011 – Memorial Day Ceremony honoring black Civil War veterans
June 26, 2011 – Living History Tour
September 24, 2011 – Geocaching with the Boy Scouts
October 2, 2011 – Murder Tour

They also have events that do not have definite dates yet, such as the annual scavenger hunt and the dedication of the memorial to Sarah Lucy Bagby Johnson, the last person prosecuted under the Fugitive Slave Act. Visit their website, mark your calendar, and help support the preservation of this historic Cleveland cemetery!

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