COVID-19

Out of concern for our community, and following state and local COVID 19 guidelines, our parent organization, The Wilderness Center, has made the decision to close the Interpretive Building which houses our offices until April 15. At that point, we will all reassess the public health risk.

What does this mean for Foxfield Preserve?
Updated March 24, 2020 in response to the Stay At Home Order

Like everyone else we are moving forward cautiously regarding COVID-19, and are regularly reviewing best practices offered by the National Funeral Directors Association, Ohio Department of Health, and the Centers for Disease Control. 

The safety of you, your loved ones, and our staff is our overriding goal. As the virus seems to spread through respiratory droplets at this point, we are following CDC advice to promote a safe distance between all those involved in services, and encouraging and providing facilities for hand washing and sanitizing. 

Will burials still be conducted at Foxfield?
Yes. However, we are asking families to:

  • Limit the number of attendees for graveside services, especially high-risk individuals. In response to Governor DeWine’s Stay-At-Home Order, we are required to limit gatherings to 10 or fewer. 
  • Stay home if you are sick. We encourage and are happy to assist with recording and live-streaming services for those unable to attend.
  • The risk of transmission is lower between people when outdoors. However, we still ask that you maintain six-feet of physical distance between attendees from outside your home while at graveside services.
  • Wash and/or sanitize hands after services. While we are currently allowing family to serve as pallbearers, we do encourage pallbearers to wear disposable gloves for their added protection.
  • Shovels will be sanitized between uses.

Is it safe to attend the funeral of someone who has died of COVID-19?
Yes.  According to the CDC:  “There is currently no known risk associated with being in the same room at a funeral or visitation service with the body of someone who died of COVID-19.” 

However, we are asking families to conform to the above safety-related requests for services performed here at Foxfield.

If someone dies of COVID-19, are extraordinary measures called for? Must they be cremated or embalmed?
No. At this time, the CDC is recommending that embalming, cremation, burial, and visitation are all appropriate at this time. (March 20, 2019)

It is believed that this virus dies quickly when the host dies; however, to prevent any droplets from being expired by the lungs when moving the body, it is recommended that the decedent wear a mask.

I plan to pass at home /  have a home funeral / help with a home death. What else should I know? 
This can be a complicated moment for those wishing to die, or assist in death or funeral outside of an institutional setting.  

According to the most recent guidance from the CDC:
“People should consider not touching the body of someone who has died of COVID-19…There may be less of a chance of the virus spreading from certain types of touching, such as holding the hand or hugging after the body has been prepared for viewing. Other activities, such as kissing, washing, and shrouding should be avoided before, during, and after the body has been prepared, if possible. If washing the body or shrouding are important religious or cultural practices, families are encouraged to work with their community and religious leaders and funeral home staff on how to reduce their exposure as much as possible. At a minimum, people conducting these activities should wear disposable gloves.” 

Will I still be able to contact Foxfield? Can Foxfield still conduct sales? Yes. Although The Wilderness Center’s Interpretive Building is closed, our staff are working remotely and are available via phone and email. The trails through the Preserve are open to the public from dawn to dusk each day. We invite you to come for a self-led visit and enjoy the peace and beauty. View a copy of our trail map here.


Of course, this may all change quickly as we continue to adapt to the situation and the most recent science. Please feel free to reach out if you have any other questions, or if we can be of any assistance, at 330-359-5235  or at foxfield@wildernesscenter.org.