34th Historic Oakdale Cemetery Walk
Friday, October 13 and Saturday, October 14, 2023
Reserve your 75 minute tour time slot between the hours of 5:30 and 7 pm
Walk through history in DeLand's historic Oakdale Cemetery with experienced West Volusia Historical Society re-enactors and hear the stories of notable hometown characters who helped shape the growth and progress of DeLand and Volusia County during the years 1923 - 1973. See the intriguing cast of characters below.
These courageous and enterprising men and women helped DeLand's social, educational, business and civic opportunities thrive in a changing world.
Tours leave every 20 minutes from the Oakdale Cemetery Clara Avenue entrance between the hours indicated above. Call 386-740-6813 to reserve your specific tour time.
$20 for WVHS members; $25 for non-members; $15 for children under the age of 12.
Advance reservation for reserved tour times is required. Deadline for reservations is Wednesday, October 11th at 4 pm. Tickets on site available only on a space-available basis with cash or check.
Call: 386.740.6813. Credit card.
In-person: Conrad Center, 137 N. Michigan Ave. in DeLand. Tues - Saturday, 12 noon - 4 pm; credit card, check or cash.
Tickets and Reservations
About the Guided Tour
Check in at the Oakdale Cemetery entrance closest to Plymouth Avenue at 800 N. Clara Avenue.
Please check-in 10 minutes prior to your reserved tour time.
Parking is available on Stetson Street or Oakdale Avenue. Plan ahead for time to park and walk to the check-in desk at the cemetery entrance (800 N. Clara Ave). Parking is not allowed within the gates of the cemetery. Drivers may drop guests off at check-in before parking.
Arrival and Parking
Oakdale Cemetery is one of the largest historic cemeteries in Volusia County with more than 15,000 grave sites.
Guests will walk the short route in groups of 15 people. If you are attending in a particular group, please give individual names when you make your reservation and make payment.
Group tours begin at 5:30 pm. Tours depart the designated check in area at the Clara Avenue entrance to the Cemetery every 20 minutes and are about 1 hour and 15 minutes in length.
The walking tour is through Oakdale Cemetery on paved walkways but all guests must be prepared for uneven pavement and be able to navigate with lighting provided by lanterns and flashlights. Wear comfortable walking shoes and be prepared for the "Florida great outdoors". A limited number of chairs is available at each tour stop.
A handicapped parking area is available in the Cemetery. Guides are not able to assist guests in getting in or out of vehicles, push wheelchairs or assist persons using a walker or walking with a cane.
From Village to Town: 50 Years of Progress
Characters you will meet on the walk
Alva Williams DeLand's first female real estate agent. Instrumental in helping Stetson University President, Dr. Lincoln Hulley acquire additional land to expand the campus, she was also instrumental in the growth of DeLand's strong civic foundation. (1892-1991) Played by Mary Selter
Rabel Moreman Parson Nicknamed DeLand's Damsel in Pigtails, she was one of the first 2 female letter carriers in DeLand. A talented musician, she earned her Stetson degree at age 52. She was a church choir director and organist, and taught music at Orange City Elementary School. (1924-2019) Played by Caryn Long
Cary E. Landis Considered an art child prodigy, he attended Law School and presumed to join his family’s law firm. But life changed with WWII. He had an illustrious Naval career, serving his country through three wars, and Captain of the missile destroyer the USS Dahlgren. 1920-1977) Played by Chris Patterson
Rufus Pinkney One of DeLand’s favorite sons, beginning in the mid-1950s he established himself as the Shoe Shine Man for over 40 years in the heart of town. A downtown city mural near where his shop had been honors him. (1921-2016) Played by Vernon Burton
Edward C. & Charlotte Furlong Dean Ed Furlong and his wife Charlotte “Peaches” played pivotal roles in the development of the infrastructure of DeLand. Ed’s impact was great on both Stetson University and the City of DeLand, where he served as City Commissioner and as Mayor. Ed - (1905-1981; Charlotte - 1897-1981) Played by Jim & Carol Dries.
Eleanora & Lessie Hagstrom Sisters-in-law from Pierson, well-steeped in the historic fernery business that grew out of the great Freeze aftermath. Both women were heavily involved in the family business and in church and social affairs of the community. (Eleanora - 1888-1984; Lessie - 1888-1972) Played by Nancy Prosser Marshall and Barb Shepherd
Betty Dreka Knox This spirited business entrepreneur, owned & operated Betty Dreka’s Dress Shop in the same location of her grandfather George’s store for over 60 years. Theirs was a DeLand family mercantile legacy of four generations. (1914-1986) Played by Nicki Junkins