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East County Friday, Apr. 1, 2022 3 months ago

APRIL FOOL: Kingfisher Lake becomes top cremation depository in Florida

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"You Urned It" finds a final resting spot at Waterside Place at Lakewood Ranch.
by: Jay Heater Managing Editor

APRIL FOOLS — As Peggy Kronus blew the final dusting of ashes off her fingers, and watched the remains of her aunt Sade Toseeya Geoux land in the crystal blue waters of Kingfisher Lake at Waterside Place, she let go a big sigh and then smiled.

While the brand new entertainment hub is in its infancy along the banks of the lake, a new business is offering those on the other end of the life's spectrum a final resting place, and the ability to go out with a fitting ceremony.

"You've Urned It," is making money in the here and now, banking on those headed to the here after.

For fees that start at $500 and then escalate depending on how elaborate the ceremony might be, "You've Urned It" supplies boats, religious services, party supplies and even live music.

Those who use the service will pick up their watercraft at Waterside Place's new marina. That could mean kayaks for small gatherings of a minimum of eight people, to multiple pontoon boats that seat up to 16 people each. "You've Urned It" has a separate pontoon boat, complete with concert-level speakers, that would carry bands.

Once the person booking the ceremony selects a spot to spread the ashes, a pilot boat is sent out immediately prior to the ceremony to stir up the water in that area in order to chase away schools of fish or alligators that might nip at the beloved's ashes as they hit the water.

"It all is done with so much class," said Kronus, who said her Aunt Sade loved seafood. "She always said 'I love to eat fish, so after I die, turnabout is fair play.'"

Although Florida has no laws about spreading human ashes, Kronus said she loved the service and the fact she didn't have to feeling like she was "polluting" the local lake.

In reality, while the state has no laws, where you can scatter ashes can be confusing as some municipalities have "no scattering" codes. Also state and federal parks have enacted codes as well. Private land requires the owner's permission.

"You've Urned It" takes care of all the paperwork so those signing with the business can concentrate on the sendoff without offending anyone. Likewise, "You've Urned It" plots out a proper resting place on a quiet section of lake so those on shore aren't affected.

"We knew that people, at this very emotional time, didn't want to worry about the legality of everything or the uneasiness of asking landowner's permission or filling out park requests," said Rustin Peace, the CEO and president of "You've Urned it. "This is becoming a more common practice and, frankly, we wanted to be out front in the winds of change."

Peace said while many industry funeral service businesses can arrange ceremonial ash scattering plans, he believes "You've Urned It" is the first of its kind, eventually resulting in Waterside Place's Kingfisher Lake attracting people from all over the country.

Here are examples of the available plans.

The No-Frills Sail Away Package — $500

This package is as simple as it gets. Your choice of religious representative meets with 8-12 people at the dock. Those in the party who so desire then leave the shore in one-man or two-man kayaks and follow a "You've Urned It" representative to the preselected spot on the lake. Kayaks are rented by the hour, so there is plenty of time to get to the spot and back at a leisurely pace. There is no actual ceremony at the scattering except for words said by family or friends. All paperwork for the event is completed by the company. A professional photographer, who paddles his own kayak, is provided to record memories of the event.

The Special Send-off Package — $2,500

Peace said this package is expected to be a top-seller. Pontoon boats carry all guests along with one musician (guitar, violinist, accordionist) to the final resting spot. A religious representative conducts the service on the lake itself before the final scattering takes place. A light brunch is served to those who attend and adult beverages are served following the ceremony, along with a champagne toast if so desired. Like all the packages, a professional photographer will capture the moment. This ceremony can last up to two hours on the lake. Peace noted that "You've Urned It" will arrange any special military accommodations, such as a 21-gun salute.

The Mardi Gras Salute — $8,000 and up

For the extremely popular client, a regular armada of boats is lined up parade style for the trip to carry 75 to 100 people to the final resting place. One pontoon carries a full band and all necessary speaker equipment while another is used to flash neon lights during the ceremony to give it that "party feel." "Dust in the Wind" and "Against the Wind" are the most requested songs. Guests can choose between scallops or filet mignon prepared by a specially-designed kitchen pontoon that will be complete with cooks and waiters. A specially designed biodegradable urn is available to scoot down a 40-foot slide into the water, the ashes slowly dispersing along the route. Like all the plans, a photographer and religious representative is included. The event is booked at three hours and, if so desired, "You've Urned It" will pair with a local restaurant so the party can continue after those attending come off the lake.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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