We have hosted hundreds of murder mystery dinners at the Munro House Bed and Breakfast in Jonesville, Michigan. Most of our events are open for couples to join. We need at least 4 couples to play and have always been able to meet the minimum. Some of our events are private for groups of friends. We have hosted families, clubs, and many diverse groups of people.
We have the setup down to a science. We generally use a festive tablecloth with our antique china and adorn the table with candles. We have developed a menu that includes appetizer, soup, salad, entree, and dessert. A typical meal includes shrimp cocktail for the appetizer. We make our favorite seasonal soup. In the Fall, we serve our Harvest Soup for the second course. Our new house salad is spectacular. It includes our home-made dressing, dried cherries, glazed almonds, and Parmesan cheese. The main course is a beef tenderloin steak served with potatoes and vegetables. Lately we have been finishing the evening with our chocolate caramel brownies served with ice cream.
We spend a good part of the afternoon preparing the meal, so a prompt arrival time is imperative. Many of our guests purchase the two night package, so they are already in town. For those guests who buy the one night package, an arrival before 5:00 p.m. is required. The event starts at around 6:30, so we need our guests to have been checked in so that we can finish the prep work, uninterrupted.
The evening starts in the parlor with an introduction of participants and an explanation of how the game is played while the appetizer and beverages are served. We try to get a feeling for the personalities of the guests so that they all will get an appropriate role. Those people with the biggest personalities will get the biggest parts. Additionally, each player gets a hat from our costume closet. We have collected a variety of funky head ware that helps to lighten the mood and transform our peeps into their new roles. That means that there is no pressure for guests to find their own costume for an event at our house. We take care of it, and keep it simple.
The guests then move into the dining room and play the game while the meal is served. Each person has a 3 page script with 4-8 clues on each sheet that they must get into the conversation over dinner. The clues are very interactive and include topics that many participants have comments to insert. In the first act, each person learns a little bit more about their character. In the second act, there is a lot of finger pointing and innuendo. The third act is where everyone has an alibi–some are good, some are not so good.
“Life is good in Jonesville”