Welcome to Bellows Falls’ annual holiday party* hosted at Martini’s Place. This is a small town community where everyone knows your name and everyone likes everyone else. For the most part. There are exceptions. Henry Putter being one of them. But surely he can’t wreak havoc at the town’s holiday celebration, can he? Oh yes. Yes he can. Trouble is coming to this party so come only if you dare.
*Can be any sort of town event: The Annual Spring Extravaganza or a Halloween party or Valentine’s Day Love Fest for example.
YEAR: 1947 (although you can do it in modern day if you want)
George’s younger brother. A World War II veteran. Since returning from the war, he’s been a bodyguard and stagehand for the Clooney Sisters tours. He married Ruth just two months ago. We’re hoping he can come to the party tonight.
Harry’s wife of just two months. Her dream is for Harry to work with her daddy at his glass factory in Buffalo so she will always live the life of luxury she deserves while staying close to daddy. Oh boy.
Mary’s sweet, befuddled, loyal, loving uncle. He feels responsible for and is very protective of Mary now that her dad, Peter is gone, especially because he lost the last loan payment they were supposed to make to Mr. Putter on the same day Peter had a fatal heart attack.
EVERYONE will be actively involved in this mystery because it will be their job to solve the case and because you’ll be encouraging them to come in costume and in character. Use any or all of these secondary suspects if you have “extra” cast members you want to use or if you have some guests who want to take on a character but not take on the full responsibility of a primary suspect. Give them their secondary suspect instructions (included) and let them run with it.
FOR LARGE GROUP MYSTERIES (75 OR MORE): We suggest you cast your secondary suspects. During the mystery it will be the secondary suspects’ “job” to act as general support for the primary suspects. They’ll roam the room gossiping about the goings-in, quiet the audience down during a main action, answer questions, bring primary suspects to tables for questioning and make sure your guests have seen the physical clues that have been revealed.
Ernie is a local cab driver with a heart of gold. A good friend of George’s. It breaks his heart to see George and Mary’s marriage in trouble so he’ll take on the roles of therapist and advisor to George. He’s great at giving bad advice with the best intentions.
Ernie’s best friend. He’ll have the worst theories in the world re: this mystery. Uh, he may be a cop but he ain’t necessarily a smart one.
Tilly and Eustace are two of George’s maiden cousins. They work for Hatch Manufacturing. Tilly is a scaredy cat and Eustace is a gossip.
Sam is a New York City playboy. He’s also one of George’s closest friends. He’s kind of a goofball. His signature line: “Hee-haw!” He was originally Mary’s boyfriend, he ended up losing her to George. But he’s moved on to other women. Ya know, being a playboy and all.
Murders. Mary drinks. Clarese is an angel. We mention Christmas.
Mary doesn’t have to drink but Clarese must believe she’s an angel. You can, of course, use the more generic term holiday in place of Christmas,
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