The inaugural Before I Die ABQ Festival is generating local news coverage on radio and TV. Learn all about the festival in these three broadcast interviews:
On KUNM-FM, the Albuquerque NPR station, Megan Kamerick did a story titled “Festival Invites People to Talk About Death.” Here’s the introduction:
As human beings we really don’t like to talk about how our lives will end, which is why fewer than 30 percent of people do any end-of-life planning. But a new festival launching in October in Albuquerque will offer a variety of practical and fun activities designed to encourage people to plan on their terms how they want the end of their lives to look like. The Before I Die Festival takes place Oct. 20-25 and is the first of its kind West of the Mississippi. It will include film screenings, panels of experts, dinners and death cafes, and even yoga (from child’s pose to corpse pose).
Megan Kamerick talks with festival organizer Gail Rubin, the Doyenne of Death, who has made it her mission in life to help people think about death in a healthy, engaged and fun way.
KRQE-TV, the Albuquerque CBS affiliate, covered the Death Cafe on Wednesday, October 11. Reporter Jackie Kent did the story, “Death Cafe previews ‘Before I Die ABQ festival.” The story starts:
ALBUQUERQUE, NM (KRQE) – Steve Borbis, 71, isn’t afraid to talk about dying.
“I’m looking forward to death because it’s inevitable. It’s kind of like I’m looking forward to dinner, also,” Borbis said. “I’ve been in the U.S. Army and got shot at. So, consequently, I think about these things.”
Death is often considered a taboo topic, whether out of fear or to protect the feelings of loved ones.
“There are the ideas that, ‘If I talk about it, it’s going to happen,’” said Gail Rubin of Albuquerque.
However, at the Death Cafe, where a conversation about death over tea and cake is encouraged, there is more laughter than tears. The lighthearted conversation – usually discussing people’s philosophical ideas about what happens after death and their own out-of-body experiences – is why Rubin, the self-proclaimed “Doyenne of Death,” is spearheading the local Death Cafe movement.
Rubin hosts monthly meetings to get the conversation started in addition to her work with companies “to connect with baby boomers concerned about end-of-life issues,” according to her biography.
“If you go out the door and don’t come back, your loved ones are going to be left with a huge mess to deal with,” Rubin said, adding about 30 percent of people don’t do any end-of-life planning.
“Having these honest conversations really makes it liberating to talk about death and funeral plans and organizing your stuff,” Rubin said. “We need to be prepared now and that can be financially, talking about wills and trusts, advanced medical directives and pre-need funeral planning.”
And on The Archbishop’s Hour on Catholic Radio, host Mary Woods interviewed Gail along with Augustine Villegas and Kim Montoya-Hopkins with the Catholic Cemetery Association live on Friday, October 13. They discussed a new guide about funeral planning for Catholics, green burial, cremation issues, and the upcoming Before I Die ABQ Festival. The interview will be rebroadcast on Immaculate Heart Radio, 98.9 FM at 8:00 p.m.
The Before I Die ABQ Festival is made possible by these sponsors:
- A Good Goodbye, funeral planning for those who don’t plan to die;
- French Funerals & Cremations, Albuquerque’s largest and oldest family-owned funeral service company;
- The Neptune Society, America’s most trusted cremation service;
- Lasting Legacy, Inc., providing estate and trust services to New Mexico families;
- Express Legal Solutions, LLC, offering “documents you need at a price you can afford;”
- Retirement Extender®, a team of specialists making the most of your finances;
- Morris Hall, PLLC, a premier estate planning law firm;
- LifeIZShort.com, practical guides for dealing with the inevitable by Peter Callan;
- The Old Pine Box, specializing in pine and cedar coffins and caskets, and specialty urns;
- My Final Checklist, a master file for personal information;
- Zia Trust, Inc., serving clients in New Mexico, Arizona, Colorado, and 38 other states;
- 1-800-AUTOPSY, a thanatology specialty service company.