BE ADVISED: Cemetery rules, regulations and proceedings are subject to change at any given time. We do not guarantee any information contained herein. For up to date information please call the cemetery (951) 653-8417.
This section of our website was created to help our customers better understand the process Riverside National Cemetery uses for funeral services. We are here to assist you and want you to know that we deliver to the cemetery on a daily basis and sometimes more than one service per day. We have experience with the cemetery and a good rapport with the cemetery representatives.
Ordering Flowers for a Funeral Ceremony/Service:
We will ask you for the date and time of the service along with a staging area number that is assigned to you by the cemetery. We will need the full legal name of the deceased for delivery of your fresh floral arrangements.
Service / Funeral Procedure for Riverside National Cemetery:
When you arrive at Riverside National Cemetery, stop at the information booth and they will direct you to the staging area of the service you are attending.
Please note that there are up to 45 services performed at this facility per day. The actual time of the service is very important. Please call Riverside National Cemetery at 951-653-8417 to confirm date, time and staging area number. This must be provided to us when ordering the flower arrangements.
Please note the staging area is used as a parking/holding area for family and friends to gather before the actual service. Example, if you are directed to meet at staging area 2, you will look for a posted sign which reads “Staging Area 2”. You should pay particular attention to the pavement when you park as the red zone is parking for the Hurst and/or representative of the cemetery. This area should be kept clear; you should park BEHIND this zone. DO NOT park in front of or across the street from the designated staging area red zone as you will likely be sent to the wrong service in the procession of cars.
Time Is Very Important:
For example, if you were told the service will be held at 10:15 a.m. that is when the cemetery representative will arrive and park in the red zone. He/she will speak with the immediate family. This is the time that all family and friends should return to their vehicles and prepare to follow the representative to the actual service/committal area. (We suggest you not carpool from here and instead take your vehicle.) Also, we recommend you not arrive more than 30 minutes prior to the ceremony time as you will most likely be asked to wait elsewhere.
Is similar to an outdoor patio and is designated with a letter, A through G. The letter of the shelter is not known until immediately before the representative arrives at the staging area; hence the need for the staging area to keep all in the group together. The representative will count the number vehicles for the service and decide which shelter will best accommodate the family and guests (each shelter has a driveway with varying lengths by which to accommodate the vehicles).
Once all family and guests arrive at the shelter, the actual service is approximately 20 minutes long and begins almost immediately after everyone is parked. When the service concludes, the next of kin will have the choice of taking the flower arrangements with them or leaving them at the gravesite location. Note: Actual gravesite locations may not be available for family members to visit immediately. Up to five flower arrangements will be taken to the gravesite by cemetery employees and placed on top or nearby the grave. Therefore, all arrangements brought to the service are welcome but any additional arrangements will need to be taken by the family. Any extra arrangements can also be donated to the “grave of the unknown” – the cemetery representative will provide additional information if desired. We suggest making accommodations for gathering after the service at a nearby restaurant or residence as other services may be scheduled soon after your loved one’s service.
Special Occasion Gravesite Delivery Available!
- Standing sprays, wreaths, crosses, open hearts, solid hearts. These are fantastic to compliment the large, wide-open space where the service is held. Typically these arrangements are chosen by the family to go to and stay at the gravesite.
- A centerpiece or wreath works well with an Urn for a cremation service. This type of arrangement is placed on top of a table and alongside or around the Urn. (Table dimensions: top is 2ft x 2ft square and is approx. 3.5 ft high and most tables have 3 tiers,as shown in the picture below)
- Basket arrangements of fresh flowers, a plant/garden basket or potted plant are not only beautiful but easy to transport and can be taken home by the family or left at the gravesite.
Riverside National Cemetery Floral Policy/Rules for Cemetery Grounds as posted:
- Cemetery policies are conspicuously posted and readily visible to the public.
- Floral arrangements accompanying the casket or urn at the time of burial are limited to five arrangements and will be placed on the completed grave. They will be removed when they become unsightly or within three days of the burial.
- Natural cut flowers may be placed on graves at any time of the year. They will be removed and disposed of when they become unsightly or when it becomes necessary to facilitate cemetery operations. Visitors may contact the office staff to learn when upcoming grounds maintenance activities will require removal of floral tributes. Regular floral removal schedules are posted at the temporary floral vase trees located throughout the cemetery.
- Artificial flowers and potted plants are not permitted on graves at any time.
- Privately owned, permanent in-ground flower containers are not permitted on gravesites.
- The cemetery will provide temporary metal containers to the public for displaying floral arrangements.
- When placing floral items, please do not use glass containers, rocks, wire or other objects that could cause injury to cemetery staff or visitors. Mowers and trimmers can cause unseen items to become dangerous projectiles.
- Permanent plantings, statues, vigil lights, breakable objects and similar items are not permitted on the graves. The Department of Veterans Affairs does not permit adornments that are considered offensive, inconsistent with the dignity of the cemetery or considered hazardous to cemetery personnel. For example, items incorporating beads or wires may become entangled in mowers or other equipment and cause injury.
- Permanent items removed from graves will be placed in an inconspicuous holding area for one month prior to disposal. Decorative items removed from graves remain the property of the donor but are under the custodianship of the cemetery. If not retrieved by the donor, they are then governed by the rules for disposal of federal property. They will not be sold, collected for sale or recycling, or removed.