The city of New Braunfels Cemetery Committee is seeking funds for their upcoming 8th annual Soul Searching Night Ramblings in the Comal Cemetery event, scheduled for October 18 and 19.
Last year, tickets for the event were $30, and Chairman Ron Hamel said the price increase impacted sales. It was the first time the tour did not sell out. The year before, the tour was rained out.
This year, the theme will be music and the arts, and tickets will return to the regular $20. However, Hamel said the committee would fundraise for the event.
“We work really hard through out the year, and we don’t get those great big funds,” Hamel said. “We’re trying to follow the lead of other organizations that seek out and get relatively large corporate-type sponsors.”
Last year’s sponsors were Lux Funeral Home and Cremation Services, Comal Flower Shop, and the Kyle Law Firm.
The tour begins at Cypress Bend Park, and visitors will take a hayride to the cemetery. From there, they will approach a grave where an actor of the deceased will rise and speak to the group on his or her contributions toward New Braunfels.
Afterward, there will be some form of entertainment and an hour-long tour.
The most contributions the committee received historically were sponsors for the golf carts to take people around and who were not ambulatory. Additionally, most of the golf cart sponsors are members of the cemetery committee.
This year, Hamel said most of the golf cart sponsors have signed up for this year, but said the committee may want to redo their contribution, but they do not know exactly how yet.
Money made from the Soul Searching tours go toward making improvements for the New Braunfels and Comal cemeteries.
Last year, funds went toward a new fence for the New Braunfels Cemetery. This year’s contribution will go toward adding park benches and trash receptacles at the Comal Cemetery.
Furthermore, the 2019 bond election gave the cemetery committee a means to retain the 50-foot cliff by the river.
“Lots of tubers come through, and that’ll keep us from having erosion into the river,” Hamel said.
There are also employees of the parks and recreation department working on the cemetery project, but they are paid by the city. The city does not take money from the committees to pay their employees.
Hamel said if people want to donate, cemetery contributions must go through the New Braunfels Parks Foundation to qualify as a nonprofit activity. From there, the parks would distribute 100 percent to the cemetery project.
To volunteer or for more information on the Soul Searching event, contact Hamel at (830) 608-1524. To donate the cemetery project, visit the New Braunfels Parks Foundation at 110 Golf Course Rd., or call (830) 221-4350.