After 20 years of contemplating a cemetery, the board of the Seaside Chapel decided to build a memorial garden instead. There is already a beautiful forecourt lawn carved out of the forest, and the side garden, shaded by oaks, has long been used as overflow seating for services. We recommended completing the gardens immediately adjacent to the sanctuary- cleaning up a service yard on the west side and locating the memorial garden immediately behind the chapel accessed from the existing side porch.

The memorials line the curved wall at the back of the garden. There is a semi-circular seating area behind the sanctuary, a square clay terrace on the west side and a nine square pavilion on the east end. Seaside’s footpath system crosses the garden in both directions. The east west path doglegs around the back of the chapel. There are paths on either side of the chapel parcel, and an informal, unplanned footpath coming in from the neighborhood from the north. The board members wanted the garden to be usable for the congregation, but they also wanted to enhance the public footpaths, and provide a more formal approach for congregants coming to the chapel from adjacent neighborhoods to the north.

The memorial garden will complete the chapel precinct and the immediate setting for the sanctuary, though there may be future phases to the east.