CFD Death Café

What is a Death Café?

Established in August 2013

In most settings, serious talk of one’s mortality would be a conversation stopper. At a CFD Death Café small groups of people sit together, eating cake and taking tea or coffee, and engage in casual conversation on the subject of dying and death. They speak of their own experiences, their fears, their wishes. They voice concerns and ask questions. They get comfortable with terms regarding the end of life. They speak of that which is discouraged in most situations—our very certain mortality.

In hosting CFD Death Cafés in the Hudson Valley, CFD hopes to build a community of caring and concern, one supportive of a Home for the Dying. CFD Death Cafés are held in restaurants, libraries, community centers, and houses of worship throughout Ulster and Dutchess Counties. Discussions have included information about green burial and other funeral options, religious traditions and spiritual beliefs about dying, do-not-resuscitate and advanced care directives—any aspect of one’s final scene in the play of life might be brought to the table. No one gets to proselytize or sell their own point of view. Everyone gets a chance to speak out. Life and death are celebrated—and cake is always served.

The CFD Death Café starts with a short presentation on topics related to end-of-life.

Recent topics include:

  • Advance Directives and the Legal Aspects of Dying
  • Talking about Dying with the Dying
  • Choices at the End-of-Life
  • Understanding Compassion Fatigue
  • The Shifting Climate of Funeral and Burial Options
  • Making Every Moment Count
  • The Wisdom Arts of Dying
  • Securing your LGBTQ Identity in Death
  • Memoir Writing Workshop

Join us for a virtual CFD Death Cafe

Having the greatest concern for the health and safety of our community and friends, we have postponed in-person CFD Death Café gatherings. We will, however, be meeting virtually!

Join us for a virtual CFD Death Cafe, and keep the conversation going!  Stay tuned for details here on our events page and on Facebook

Join the conversation at CFD’s virtual Death Café, coming to a screen near you via Zoom! Folks from all over the country are logging in to connect with each other and share their ideas and concerns about dying and death.  

Plus, we’ve teamed up with Death Cafe of Westchester for this series of virtual events, expanding our circles despite the necessity to maintain a distance from each other. By providing an online safe space for dialoguing, Death Cafe keeps the conversation going. Join our community, and let’s hang out and talk about dying and death!

At Death Cafés, the aim is to increase awareness of death in order to help people make the most of their finite lives. Death Cafés are open to, and respectful of, people of all communities and belief systems. A Death Café is a group-directed conversation of death with no agenda, objectives, or themes. It is a discussion group rather than a grief support or counseling session.



 Come be with us on Zoom for a virtual CFD Death Cafe.

Please note:

Prompt attendance is required to be admitted into the meeting. The Zoom meeting will open ten minutes prior to the posted time so that everyone can check in early and be ready to spend some valuable time together. A brief introduction and guidelines review will get us all started promptly at the posted time. Then small groups of four to six people will break out into separate rooms for private discussions.