The next Albuquerque Death Cafe will take place on Wednesday, October 11 from 9:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. at Palo Duro Senior Center, 5221 Palo Duro NE, Albuquerque. The center is located just east of the Erna Fergusson Library on San Mateo Blvd. NE. This special Death Cafe event will also offer a preview of events for the upcoming Before I Die ABQ Festival.
There will be two additional Death Cafes as part of the Before I Die ABQ Festival:
- Monday, October 23 from 2:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. at the North Valley Senior Center, 3825 4th Street NW (two blocks north of Candelaria) and;
- Tuesday, October 24 from 9:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. at North Domingo Baca Multigenerational Center, 7521 Carmel Ave. NE.
Attendees at all Before I Die ABQ Festival events, including this preview Death Cafe, can enter drawings for a free cremation from The Neptune Society of Albuquerque and a cedar “coff-urn” from The Old Pine Box.
The objective of the Albuquerque Death Cafe is “To increase awareness of death with a view to helping people make the most of their (finite) lives.” At these events, people come together in a relaxed, confidential and safe setting to discuss death while eating delicious cake or cookies. It’s an interesting, unstructured conversation that’s open and free-flowing with no specific agenda.
The event is hosted by pioneering death educator Gail Rubin, Certified Thanatologist. The author of three upbeat books on end-of-life issues, she uses humor and funny film clips to break down resistance to talking about serious subjects like death and funeral planning. Gail was the first person in the U.S. west of the Mississippi to hold a Death Cafe in September of 2012, and she is event coordinator of the inaugural Before I Die ABQ Festival, taking place October 20-25, 2017.
The festival offers multiple upbeat activities for people to openly think about, talk about and do something about our mortality. Twenty one free and low-cost events to be held at numerous locations around Albuquerque include:
- “Prelude to Eternity” dinner party in the Pavilion at Sunset Memorial Park;
- A panel of local funeral directors on “What You Need to Know Before You Go;”
- Yoga class “From Child Pose to Corpse Pose: Life, Death, Yoga and Spirituality;”
- A tour of historic Fairview cemetery (established 1881), and the Office of the Medical Investigator (OMI);
- “Answering Your Burning Questions About Cremation” information session;
- Panel discussions on “Making Plans to Live Well Until We Die” on medical care and end-of-life issues;
- “Jewish Burial Equals Green Burial” at the Jewish Community Center;
- The Guild Cinema double feature of classic films about life and death, Harold and Maude and The Seventh Seal;
- “Earth, Air, Fire & Water: A Celebration of Cremation and Art” with local artists selling their works in ceramics, paper and other media;
- The Albucreepy Ghost Tour of downtown Albuquerque landmark buildings;
- A tour of the Fathers Building Futures casket building workshop;
- “Mindfulness, Mortality and Self-Care,” a meditation session with world-renowned teacher Ralph Steele.
Registration for these and other events is now open at www.BeforeIDieABQ.com.
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; and
- Zia Trust, Inc., serving clients in New Mexico, Arizona, Colorado, and 38 other states.