Garden of Remembrance Opens New
Memorial Center & Chapel
The Garden of Remembrance (Gan Zikaron) Memorial Park is proud to announce the opening of the new Marilyn & Raymond Greenberg Memorial Center and the Tina & Albert Small, Jr. Memorial Chapel on the grounds of the nonprofit memorial park.
The fully accessible Center and Chapel can accommodate up to 200 funeral service attendees and includes a private family wing, a state-of-the-art audio-visual system with audio assist hearing devices, a clergy office, beautiful restrooms, and an adjacent memorial garden. The Center includes the Dreyfuss Family Memorial Hall for small funerals, a shiva minyan, or a meal of consolation adjacent to a kitchenette. The Chapel is equipped with livestream video capabilities to broadcast funeral services to those unable to attend and to provide a permanent recording keepsake for the family, upon request.
The Lobby and Chapel feature the beautiful 125-year-old historic stained-glass Star of David originally installed in the former Washington Hebrew Congregation synagogue on 8th & I Streets in the District of Columbia.
For information about using the Memorial Center & Chapel, please contact the Garden of Remembrance Office at 301-428-300 or [email protected].
Garden of Remembrance Receives Green Burial Council Certification
The Garden of Remembrance (Gan Zikaron) Memorial Park in Clarksburg, Maryland — the region’s only nonprofit cemetery serving the entire Jewish Community — has become the first cemetery in Maryland to be certified as a Green Hybrid Burial Ground by the Green Burial Council (GBC).
“Our Board and Advisory Committee have been discussing what it means to be a “green cemetery,” said Hank Levine, president of the 150-acre memorial park. “Many aspects of Jewish burial practices are inherently ‘green’ such as wooden caskets, burial shrouds, and no embalming,” he explained. “We wanted the community to know and appreciate this, and to understand some of the steps we have taken to honor the environment even as we preserve and practice Jewish traditions.”
Gan Zikaron was certified as a “Hybrid” Burial Ground because some sections of the memorial park do not use concrete liners while others use liners which do not decompose even though all liners have openings on the bottom for decomposition of wooden caskets and remains. The seven-part certification assessment process reviewed all aspects of the Garden of Remembrance to evaluate compliance including operations, landscape and maintenance policies, family involvement, trust funds, and materials.
The mission of the Green Burial Council is to inspire and advocate for environmentally sustainable, natural death care through education and certification. “Recognition by the Green Burial Council is a testament to our commitment to the environment and the sensitivity and diversity of our community,” shared Glenn Easton, executive director of the Garden of Remembrance. “We look to our Advisory Committee of community rabbis and synagogue leaders for continuing guidance in our practices of ‘bal tashchit,’ the commandment to preserve our environment.”
The Garden of Remembrance has multiple sections throughout the memorial park for the community at-large and for its twenty-eight partner congregations. Founded in 1999, the Memorial Park has held over 2,100 burials, and accommodates the wide range of religious observances and practices of the Jewish community.
For information about the Garden of Remembrance, please contact their office at 301-428-3000 or [email protected]. The Memorial Park is located at 14321 Comus Road, Clarksburg, Maryland 20871.
For more information about Green Burials, please click here.
For Immediate Release
April 1, 2022
Contact: Glenn S. Easton
Garden of Remembrance Memorial Park Awarded
Level 1 Arboretum Accreditation
The Garden of Remembrance Gan Zikaron Memorial Park in Clarksburg, Maryland, has been awarded a Level 1 Accreditation by The ArbNet Arboretum Accreditation Program and The Morton Arboretum. The Arboretum designation is in recognition of the identification and maintenance of dozens of varieties of trees and plants in the 152-acre memorial park and for achieving particular standards of professional practices deemed important for arboreta and botanic gardens.
The nonprofit Garden of Remembrance recently expanded its Forest Conservation Preserve protecting thousands of trees and native species within 65 acres of protected woodlands surrounding the memorial park. It is currently the only memorial park in Maryland certified as a Hybrid Green Burial Cemetery. “Bal Tashchit” (protecting the environment) is a Biblical precept dating back thousands of years which we strive to follow as one of our core values,” explains Glenn Easton, executive director of the volunteer-led memorial park. “We want Gan Zikaron to be more than just a cemetery but a park that our families and community can visit to commune with nature in a beautiful and contemplative setting,” concludes Easton.
The ArbNet Arboretum Accreditation Program is the only global initiative to officially recognize arboreta at various levels of development, capacity, and professionalism. The Garden of Remembrance is also now recognized as an accredited arboretum in the Morton Register of Arboreta, a database of the world’s arboreta and gardens dedicated to woody plants.
ArbNet (www.arbnet.org) is an interactive, collaborative, international community of arboreta. ArbNet facilitates the sharing of knowledge, experience, and other resources to help arboreta meet their institutional goals and works to raise professional standards through the ArbNet Arboretum Accreditation Program. The accreditation program, sponsored and coordinated by The Morton Arboretum in Lisle, Illinois in cooperation with American Public Gardens Association and Botanic Gardens Conservation International, is the only global initiative to officially recognize arboreta based on a set of professional standards.
The Garden of Remembrance Gan Zikaron Memorial Park (www.gardenofremembrance.org) was founded in 1999 to serve the Jewish communities of Maryland, Washington, DC, and Virginia as a nonprofit cemetery directed by a volunteer Board of community leaders. Its 29 Partner Congregations represent the widest span of Jewish religious practices and is open to affiliated and unaffiliated members of the community. It is located at 14321 Comus Road, Clarksburg, Maryland 20871 and can be reached at 301-428-3000 or [email protected].
Garden of Remembrance Selected a Finalist in the American Cemetery of Excellence Awards
The Garden of Remembrance (Gan Zikaron) Memorial Park in Clarksburg, Maryland was selected as a Finalist in the annual American Cemetery of Excellence (ACE) Awards. Each of the finalists “has created a place where lives are commemorated, deaths are recorded, and legacies live on,” describes Patti Martin Bartsche in American Cemetery Magazine, sponsor of the ACE Awards. “And in the year of the coronavirus pandemic, every one found ways to connect with grieving families and provide meaningful services during uncertain and unprecedented times…and stood out not only for their performance, professionalism, and innovation, but also for their ability to look to the past to envision the future, “ she concludes.
Founded in 1999, the Garden of Remembrance is the only nonprofit Jewish cemetery serving the greater Maryland, D.C., and Virginia Jewish community. Located on 152 acres of rolling hills, forests, gardens, and grasslands, the Garden of Remembrance has twenty-seven Partner Congregations including Reform, Reconstructionist, Conservative, Orthodox, and Renewal synagogues and serves those not affiliated with a congregation.
“Being recognized as a cemetery of excellence is a testament to the founding vision of our lay leaders and a demonstration of the dedication to excellence by our wonderful staff members, especially during these difficult coronavirus challenges,” relates Glenn Easton, Garden of Remembrance executive director. “We strive to serve the Jewish community one family at a time by honoring loved ones and comforting the bereaved,” he concludes.
The Garden of Remembrance (Gan Zikaron) Memorial Park is located at 14321 Comus Road, Clarksburg, Maryland 20871 and can be reached at 301-428-3000, [email protected], or through its website at www.gardenofremembrance.org. For more about the ACE award, click here. To read full article, click here.
For Immediate Release
March 7, 2022
Contact: Glenn S. Easton (301) 428-3000
Garden of Remembrance Memorial Park Welcomes Beth Sholom Congregation as its 29th Partner Congregation
The Garden of Remembrance (Gan Zikaron) Memorial Park in Clarksburg, Maryland has announced that Beth Sholom Congregation in Frederick, Maryland has become the 29th Partner Congregation of the Washington region’s Jewish community cemetery.
“Beth Sholom Congregation has been serving the Frederick Jewish community and its member families through sacred moments for over 100 years,” said Hank Levine, President of the nonprofit memorial park. “We are honored by their confidence and support for our mission of providing an eternal resting place for the region’s Jewish community. We look forward to welcoming Rabbi Jordan Hersh and his executive director, Rob Allen, to our Advisory Board.”
The Garden of Remembrance includes Partner Congregations from Orthodox, Conservative, Reform, Reconstructionist, and Renewal synagogues. It also serves Washington-area Jews who are not affiliated with a congregation, and is a partner agency of the Jewish Federation of Greater Washington. Founded in 1999, Gan Zikaron, has sold over 10,000 burial sites in its 152-acre memorial park and to date has held nearly 2,500 burials.
The Garden of Remembrance Memorial Park is located near Interstate 270 at 14321 Comus Road in Clarksburg, Maryland. For a complete list of the Garden of Remembrance’s twenty-nine Partner Congregations and additional information about the Memorial Park, please visit www.gardenofremembrance.org or call 301-428-3000.
Sheldon Grosberg z”l”
Sheldon Grosberg, the founding Executive Director of the Garden of Remembrance for twenty years, passed away on September 1, 2019. Sheldon was a gift to the Washington Jewish community, extending his vision and leadership as he served on the boards of many charitable organizations. He was a supporter of social justice and a bridge-builder, always finding (and sometimes creating) common ground. And he was a warm friend, extending kindness to all. Sheldon was frequently described as a “mensch of all mensches”. Read the Washington Jewish Week’s special tribute here.
Since the fall of 2000, many exciting developments have taken place at the Garden of Remembrance, helping to strengthen its role as the preferred cemetery for many congregations, organizations and individuals throughout the greater Washington area.
In addition to the growing interest from congregations, important traditions, news and events are helping to establish the Garden of Remembrance as a community-centered memorial park.
Check this page for our latest news and information or to review past articles and press releases. After the article appears on screen, click “File” on your browser and choose “Print” or “Save” to read it at your convenience.