In a recent study conducted by Olson Zaltman Associates, baby boomers revealed their true feelings about funeral homes: dark, claustrophobic and “tomblike,” they said. Upon gaining this knowledge, Scott Mueller, owner of Mueller Memorial Funeral Home and Cremation Services, decided it was time to update.
Mueller rethought the best way to serve the community and created a relaxing, open feeling at Mueller Memorial, which has led to more meaningful and heartfelt services. “We’ve created a really great reception area,” says Mueller Memorial director of community relations Taelor Johnson. “People are sticking around and sharing stories.”
The updated space, which includes a 1700-square-foot addition, boasts nearly floor-to-ceiling windows, a retractable frosted glass wall separating the ceremonial and reception areas, and updated audiovisual technology to help Mueller Memorial create a video for each family served.
“It’s a customizable space,” Johnson explains. “We can tailor to families wanting something very traditional or very nontraditional.” One of the features that allow this versatility is the bar, which is the first bar to be put into a funeral home in the country, and gives families access to a lot of options. They can cater food and/or drink through Rudy’s Redeye Grill (or a caterer from an additional list) or choose to serve the coffee, lemonade and water provided by Mueller Memorial.