Location of Ash Scattering
Compliant with EPA requirements, ashes must be scattered no closer than 3 nautical miles from land. Our standard service will leave Pleasant Bay and travel the appropriate distance due east of the Chatham Lighthouse.
Alternatively, scatterings can be performed off of Nauset Beach to the north or Monomoy Island to the south. Please see the FAQ’s at the bottom of this page for more details.
Order of Tribute
Once we arrive at the desired location, the service typically involves making 3 circles.
During the first circle, a family member is often designated to say a few words or to read a special verse. If you prefer, the Captain is also available to recite and share any poems or prayers you may choose.
During the second circle the ashes will be released. Down Cape Charters will provide:
- A biodegradable urn, if needed.
- One dozen roses. While additional flowers and/or wreaths are welcome, please note that all items released during the ash scattering ceremony must decompose. No plastic flowers or other non-biodegradable items should be released.
- Water soluble cards for any final messages the family may wish to write.
At the appropriate time, the captain (or a family member) will lower the urn into the water and afterwards, a moment of silence is observed.
The third and final circle provides an opportunity for placing additional flowers and for remembrances and prayers. The captain will finish with a captains prayer followed by the ringing of the “Eight Bells” signaling the end of the departeds “watch”.
Once the service is complete the boat will return to our dock.