Murder at Pieceful Lake
A Quilt Murder Mystery Dinner
by Nancy Becker Reester
All rights reserved 2011
Murder, mayhem, and lively quilt show politics are combined in a two and one half hour evening of mystery, dinner and quilting. The Twisted Threadz Quilt Guild is holding a retreat at Pieceful Lake Retreat Center. Betty Bitchay is found dead in her bed with her Best of Show Ribbon stuck to her nose. As the script unfolds the characters create a 50-inch
Horrible Happenings at the Winery
A Quilt Murder Mystery Dinner
The Twisted Threadz Quilt Guild is caught up in misfortune, mistakes and mystery again. Guild members are hanging an exhibit in the lobby of the LeLuscious Grapes Winery when the power goes out. When the lights go back on Polly Esther is missing! What happened to her and who caused it? A 45" square quilt is created as the search goes on.
The Murder Mystery Dinner can be enjoyed by a large group or a small group of thirteen. The event begins with cocktails and hors d’oeuvres when the characters mingle with the audience to get to know the cast and pick up clues. The play opens with the characters introducing themselves. Act I sets the scene of the crime. During each scene characters place a previously prepared block on a large chart. During intermission salad is served.
As the action resumes Act II reveals more clues and more parts of the quilt. During the second intermission the main course is enjoyed. Act III brings more conflict and drama along with the rest of the quilt. During dessert accusations are made. The culprit is then revealed.
The kit provides sixty four female and five male audience character names so everyone feels they are part of the action. As audience members enter they are given a name tag and a persona with instructions for meeting characters. For example, Lacey Thong works for Victoria’s Secret and she has to find a character and tell her about a sale which is a clue for later. The Witt sisters, Knit, Dim and Half, have to find other characters in the cast as well.
Murder at Pieceful Lake and Horrible Happenings at the Winery are excellent evening activities for a quilt guild retreat. Characters can prepare their quilt parts together before the event. Instructions are also provided for a small group. The Hostess Guide gives instructions for mailing out the parts with the invitations to characters ahead of time. The parts of the quilt vary in difficulty. There are blocks or quilt parts that vary in difficulty from easy to intermediate. The rest of the parts are cutting alternate blocks or straight borders so beginners and even non-quilters can participate. Each character has the same number of lines and the same number of audience members asking her questions during hors d’oeuvres. Every character has means and motive.
Meet the Characters: Murder at Pieceful lake
Allie Fresco: feeds the Guild, to her food is love.
Polly Anski: Guild president, always the peace maker.
Angelina Collage: token art quilter, loves all new techniques.
Gettie Dunn: quilt show chair, the mistress of organization.
Nouveau Lloyd: new quilter wants to learn it all.
Rose de Sharon: queen of applique’, perfect points and seams.
Fulla Spectrum: Guild Color Diva, there isn’t a color she doesn’t love.
Ohso Wright: quilt police, insists on excellence.
Oracie Lush: work’s a little sloppy but always has a smile.
Bitsey Pieces: scrap queen, can make any scrap useful.
Lotta Aggression: must always be first, best to stay out of her way.
Ima Procrastinator: last, of course, decisions come slowly to her.
Narrator: moves the group through the evening.
Meet the Characters: Horrible Happenings at the Winery
Allie Fresco; as creative with food as with quilts
Angelina Collage: art quilter extraordinaire
Antiqua Oldie: loves all things old
Char Donay: chairman of the exhibit
Emily Embellish: If it's standing still she'll put beads on it.
Gettie Dunn:loves modern quilts
Longa Memory: Guild historian
Mera Low: gadget guru
Pina Grigio: paper piecing diva
Savi YonBlanc: novice quilter
Syrah Riesling: minister's wife
Wanna B. Quiltin: narrator, moves the action along
Each character except the narrator prepares a quilt part or block prior to the event. Complete instructions are included.
Schedule of the event:
Hors d’oeuvres; Before and during characters and audience member mingle. Narrator’s speech, character introductions and Act I. 20 minutes.
Salad course: After Act I the script will tell you when to stop and serve salad.
Act II: Approximately 20 minutes. More clues and parts to the quilt on the chart.
Entrée: The script will tell you to stop and serve the entrée at the end of Act II.
Act III: Begin Act III after everyone has finished their entrée. 20 minutes.
Dessert: The script will indicate when to stop and serve dessert.
Closing Statements: Each character gives a statement from the script about their motive. Ten minutes.
Accusations: Have each character, or audience member, fill out the Who Done It Sheet with their accusation of the murderer. Ten minutes.
Solution: Narrator reads the solution to the murder and the winner is announced.
Murder at Pieceful Lake and Horrible Happenings at the Winery
The kits come with everything you need except food and fabric for an evening of fun and quilting.
The Kit includes:
Invitations and envelopes
Hostess Guide with complete instructions for the event including fabric requirements.
Instruction packets for each character’s quilt section.
Character scripts and Narrator’s script.
Chart for assembling the quilt.
Who Done It Sheet and answer sheet.
Picture of the Quilt.
List of audience character names and personas. Vocabulary list for Non-Quilters.
Costs$130.00. includes the kit in a box and shipping--less than the average cost of a speaker for your Guild. If you’re doing the dinner as a small group the cost is $10.00 for each character.
To order: Make checks payable to:
Nancy Reester 3271 Osprey Lane
Port Charlotte, Florida 33953 The Murder Box will be mailed to you within ten days.
Comments by Guilds who have enjoyed Murder at Pieceful Lake:
Hi Nancy, Just wanted to let you know how much fun our guild had putting on this play. Not sure who had more fun the characters or the audience. What a fun idea. thank you.
Yeah! We did your murder mystery Wednesday night and had great fun! Many members have followed up with me to say how much fun it was. Several groups guessed correctly. I have passed your contact information to another group who heard how much fun we had. Thanks, Kim Kahanic
My Guild, The Rheinland Pfalz Guild, plans to perform this mystery at our big year-end meeting in May 2015. The Rheinland Pfalz Guild serves members of the Kaiserlautern/Ramstein military community to include NATO forces. Our membership includes quilters from all different nations-Americans, German, French, and Dutch. Inspite of our diverse backgrounds we are all united in our love of fabric, food, and fun. The "Murder at Pieceful Lake " murder -mystery dinner is the perfect way to tie all those loves together! Thank you so much for sharing with us. We look forward to future murder mysteries you write. Johnnie Fiscus-Jost
We did your Pieceful Lake one at our Guild and it was a huge hit. We even raffled off the quilt. It was one of the best evenings ever.
Nancy, At the Daytona Show I had lunch with a group of ladies who had seen your Murder Mystery the night before. They RAVED about it---how much fun they had, how clever you are! I'm sure you have a good time presenting it also. Karen