A glass of wine during a funeral ? Naples funeral home offers full wine cellar during its serivces
Rick Ritter, WBBH
3:16 PM, Jan 23, 2014
Have you ever heard of a wine cellar inside a funeral home? Sounds kind of crazy, right?
Well, now there's a funeral parlor in Naples that offers a wine gathering during its services.
"Strange...they don't seem to go together," said Lee Vumbacco, Naples.
"I have never, never even close to it," said Seth Minson, General Manager at Hodges Funeral Home in North Naples.
In fact, Minso believes it's the first wine cellar at a funeral parlor in the entire country -- and it's right here in Southwest Florida.
"Nobody wants to go to a funeral; nobody wants to stay at a funeral home. So we've been renovating things," Minso said.
The cellar is an addition to the popular Hodges Funeral Home. Minso says it offers families a different way to grieve.
"They still want to have a party, still want to celebrate and have the means to mourn their loved ones…but they don't want to do it over a person's body," Minso said. "For the younger generations that's become such an old fashion idea."
"Our goal is to make people comfortable, almost like they weren't even in a funeral home," Minso said.
Of course, an idea like this comes with mixed opinions.
"I like the idea," said Judy Fowski, Naples. "I like the idea of a celebration of life when people can stand around and talk."
"Maybe I'm old fashion, I don't know. It doesn't sound like they go together," Vumbacco said.
The home will still offer its traditional services for those not interested in the wine cellar.
"No different then going to a restaurant that serves alcohol and not sitting at the bar," Minso said. "There's people that this isn't going to be meaningful towards and you got to help them through the grieving process."
Minso believes the idea could soon catch on throughout the country.
"Sure, there are tears, and sure, there's sadness, but the fact of the matter is there's a personal way to celebrate somebody," Minso said. "The traditional and religious aspects I believe in. This is just something as an extension to some of the other families. We're not trying to change what's important to you -- we're trying to add something that may be important to someone else."
"Let's see how it goes, but I suspect it will catch on," said Bob Fowski, Naples.