Preparing graves for Memorial Day as presented by: Minnesota Public Radio

For many people, Memorial Day Weekend includes a visit to the cemetery. It's John Peterson's mission to make sure those cemeteries are ready for the holiday. Peterson is the creator and owner of the Twin Cities business Grave Groomers. Some families hire Peterson to tend to graves of recently deceased loved ones. Others want him to care for the burial sites of those who passed away long ago. John Peterson washes a monument in Calvary Cemetery in St. Paul, Minn., on May 7, 2011. Peterson started Grave Groomers, a cemetery maintenance and beatification service, in 1999. His customers hire him to do everything from polish the headstones of their loved ones to lay flowers on their graves. John Peterson puts a fresh coat of paint on a large urn that serves as a grave marker. "I like seeing the cemeteries around Memorial Day. I like seeing how all the hard work turned out," says Peterson. "And I like knowing that people care that their families' graves look good." Some families hire John Peterson to tend to graves of recently deceased loved ones. Others want him to care for the burial sites of those who passed away long ago.

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