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Memorial Day Celebration

Celebrate with Music and Art this Memorial Day at Lakewood Cemetery – Monday, May 30, 2016

Music and art bring our memories to life. This Memorial Day, gather with friends and family at Lakewood Cemetery to experience a day filled with music and art as we celebrate the lives of loved ones.

Activities include a Memorial Day ceremony, live music, tours of the cemetery, drawing, poetry and photography classes, art and history exhibits, refreshments and more. See below for a full list of event activities and times.

This event is free and open to the public. For more information, call (612) 822-2171 or email info@lakewoodcemetery.com.

Floral arrangements
During Memorial Day weekend (Friday, May 27th through Monday, May 30th from 8:30 a.m. until 8:00 p.m.) you can purchase a wide variety of fresh floral bouquets for decorating the graves of your loved ones. Look for the tent just inside our main gate. Prices range from $8.00 to $25.00. You can also find containers for your bouquets of fresh flowers and a limited number of flags along the main road as you enter the cemetery that you may use free of charge. See our decoration policy.

At 10:30 a.m., our Memorial Day ceremony is held near the Soldiers Memorial monument. To locate the ceremony site within the cemetery, see map of the cemetery (PDF). This year’s ceremony will include:
  • Gospel quartet led by Robert Robinson
  • Special guest David Geister (veteran and historical artist)
  • Minneapolis Police Band
  • Dove release
  • The playing of Taps
  • Honor guard
Please note: We provide chairs, but seating is limited. We welcome you to bring your own blanket or portable chair.

Live Music

Music inside the Lakewood Chapel
Listen to live music and view the spectacular mosaic interior of Lakewood’s Byzantine-style chapel, built in 1910. Music outdoors near the Refreshments Tent
Enjoy refreshments while listening to contemporary folk music from local artists.

Tours & Scenery

“Artists & Performers” guided walking tours – 12 p.m., 1:30 p.m., & 3 p.m.
Enjoy a leisurely stroll through Lakewood to learn about Minnesota’s creative history. This guided tour celebrates the wide array of artistic achievements by Lakewood’s famous and lesser-known residents--from visual artists to musicians, dancers to architects, and writers to art philanthropists.

Trolley tours of Lakewood’s history, art and gardens - 12-3 p.m.
Take a trolley tour of Lakewood to see monuments of local politicians, business leaders and other community members. You’ll also learn about Lakewood’s landscape and gardens and see artistic monument styles from the Victorian era to today. Tours are approximately one hour long.

Horse-and-carriage rides - 12-3 p.m.
Travel through the cemetery as visitors once did – by carriage. Enjoy a pleasant ride around Lakewood’s oldest section with views of beautiful monuments and Lake Calhoun.

Historic streetcar line rides - 9:30 a.m. to 8:00 p.m.
The Minnesota Streetcar Museum runs its historic streetcars from Lake Harriet to Lakewood on Memorial Day. Board at Lakewood’s old streetcar entrance (follow the signs in the cemetery that day). The Minnesota Streetcar Museum charges $2 for a round trip; kids 3 & under ride free.

Self-guided walking tours of the cemetery
Lakewood offers three self-guided walking tours:
  • Lakewood Cemetery: A Self-Guided Tour
  • Lakewood Memorial Chapel: A Visitor’s Guide
  • A Tour of Memorial Symbolism at Lakewood Cemetery
You can pick up these free tour brochures in Lakewood's Administration Building (at the front entrance), in the Lakewood Memorial Chapel, or in either mausoleum on Memorial Day or anytime during Lakewood’s daily hours of operation. To download the tour brochures now, visit Lakewood's online bookstore.

Drawing, Poetry & Photography

Drawing for Reflection and Remembrance - 12-3 p.m.
Put pencil to paper and try drawing scenery at Lakewood and/or memories of loved ones with guidance from experts at The Drawing Project, a nonprofit organization co-founded by artists Lynda Monick-Isenberg and Shannon Brunette. No experience necessary. All materials provided.

Poetic Memorials - 12-3 p.m.
Honor your loved ones through poetry writing sessions led by Janna Knittel, a published poet with a Master of Fine Arts from the University of Minnesota. At the top of each hour, Janna will provide a short instruction about a particular poetic technique, followed by writing time. There will be opportunities for you to share your work and/or receive one-on-one instruction. No experience necessary. All materials provided.

Photography at Lakewood - 12-3 p.m.
Receive real-time tips and instruction on taking photographs of landscape scenery and artistic monuments at Lakewood, provided by photography instructors with Minneapolis Community Education. *You must bring your own digital camera to participate.


“A Storyteller with a Paint Brush” art exhibit, lower level foyer of the Garden Mausoleum – 11 a.m. - 3 p.m.
See paintings and illustrations from our ceremony speaker, David Geister, a Minneapolis-based artist specializing in historical art, picture book illustrations and landscape paintings. His artwork has been featured in multiple issues of The History Channel Magazine and he was recently invited to create a World War I mural for the Minnesota History Center.

"Lakewood Chapel: 1910 to Today" exhibit, lower level of Lakewood’s chapel - 12-3 p.m.
Discover Lakewood’s Byzantine-style mosaic chapel, from its 1910 construction to its 1997 renovation. The exhibit includes historic photos of the Lakewood trustees who commissioned the chapel to be built, many were prominent in Minneapolis’ growth as a city. View a video of TPT’s "Almanac" interview with the restoration architect.

"History of Lakewood" exhibit, lower level of Lakewood’s chapel - 10 a.m. - 3 p.m.
This exhibit explores the history, art and culture of Lakewood, including facts about Minneapolis history, cemetery art and sculpture, symbolism, horticulture and famous people memorialized at Lakewood.

Children's Activities

Arts & crafts - 12-3 p.m.
Make beaded jewelry with members of Boy Scout Troop 100.

More Details

Refreshments - 12-3 p.m.
Enjoy free coffee and cookies while you listen to live music in Lakewood’s beautiful outdoor garden area. The refreshments tent is located in the garden area between the Lakewood Garden Mausoleum and the Lakewood Community Memorial Mausoleum.

You may park alongside roads in the cemetery except where there are "no parking" signs. Please note that traffic in the cemetery on Memorial Day is often congested, especially when entering or exiting the cemetery at the 36th Street & Hennepin Avenue entrance. You may also enter and exit the cemetery at Dupont & 40th Street (this gate is open Memorial Day only). See a map of the cemetery (PDF).

All food and activities are free, except the $2 streetcar rides provided by the Minnesota Streetcar Museum.

Call (612) 822-2171 or email us at info@lakewoodcemetery.com if you have questions about this event. For more about Lakewood's history and art, visit Lakewood's Online Bookstore.


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