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Wood Lake Combines Nature With History—And Technology

The nature center is encouraging people to further memorialize their loved ones.

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While originally designed for the automotive industry, QR codes (quick response codes) have been popping up in retail store windows, on soda cans and in magazines the past couple years.

You've likely seen one. The codes are black and white in color, and have small squares that make up a sort of pattern within a box. These days anyone with the right smartphone application can scan one of the codes and find instant information—usually on sales, loyalty programs, coupons and so on.

Now, QR codes are becoming part of .

According to Director , the center is encouraging anyone who has commemorated a person with a bench, garden or rock to go one step further by creating a QR code linked to a biography of the person.

"Haven't you ever wondered who that person was?" Shragg asked rhetorically when referring to the numerous memorials at Wood Lake. "We have all these memorials at Wood Lake, wouldn't it be great if we could show who those people were?"

After all is purchased, said and done, the code would be linked to the biography on MemoryLinks.com. Video, photos and family tree information can also be added to the biography.

Shragg has some experience in this area. Shragg's grandmother is buried in in Richfield and her family recently created a QR code, which is now placed on the headstone.

The first Wood Lake QR code went up this week on the Sue M.Olson garden, which was the first memorial garden ever constructed, according to Shragg. The code was purchased by Sid Munson in honor of Olson.

"It's so exciting to extend the ability for people to leave a legacy about their loved ones," Shragg said in an e-mail. "And take away the mystery of who they are."

Anyone interested in purchasing a code should contact Mendota Heights-based Katzman Monument Company at 651-305-3221. Norm Taple of Katzman said the cost is $150 with tax. After purchase, the code can be registered with MemoryLinks and the biographic information can be added.

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