People talk about the death of shopping malls in America, but it may be death that is breathing new life into some of these retail relics.
The AP reports that Forest Lawn, the operators of several cemeteries and mortuaries in Southern California, has spent the last two years selling its services via a number of in-mall kiosks in the area. And it’s only one of the funeral home chains turning toward more traditional retail locations to do business.
“We try to reach our audience where they are at and the mall is a great way to do that,” a rep for the company tells the AP. “And it’s also, perhaps, a way to reach people who might be a little leery about coming directly into one of our parks.”
That may not be such a bad move. Sure, there are plenty of funeral and burial plans that can be arranged well in advance, but there is just something grim about visiting a funeral home or a cemetery for shopping purposes.
“Funeral planning is something everybody knows they must do, but at the same time it’s something nobody wants to do,” explains the executive director of the International Cemetery, Cremation and Funeral Association. “Nobody gets up on a Saturday morning and says, ‘Gee, it’s a nice day. I wonder if I can go out and get myself a burial plot.’”