Death Café and green burial presentation


On Sunday, March 1, at 1:30 pm, the West Tisbury library will host the next Death Café with Heather Massey, facilitator and co-founder of Massachusetts’ first Death Café. According to a press release, this gathering will provide a comfortable atmosphere in which to share a respectful, thought-provoking, and life-affirming conversation on the topics of death, dying, and bereavement. 

Death Café is an international movement started in Europe to encourage people to talk about the taboo subject of death. At these events, people come together in a relaxed, confidential, and safe setting to discuss death. The idea has expanded into the U.S. from the U.K. and other countries around the world. The objective is to increase awareness with a view to lessening the fear of death while enhancing life. A Death Café is a group-directed discussion of death with no agenda, objectives or themes, or affiliated religious organization. It is a discussion group rather than a grief support or counseling session. 

Following the Death Café at 2:30 pm, Massey will present an overview of natural post-death care of the body at home by family and/or friends and community members. She will also talk about the interest in training and forming a community deathcare circle on the Vineyard.

Massey will be joined by Green Burial Massachusetts board member Joan Pillsbury, who will review what green burial is and what it is not. Joan will present a 13-minute video about Steelmantown Cemetery in New Jersey, a green cemetery in operation. The presentation will conclude with information about how to champion a green cemetery in your town.


Both the Death Café and the presentation are free and open to the public. Cake will be served. For more information call the library at 508-693-3366, email, or visit