Mystery Party Ideas - Mystery Tips
Anne in Columbus, OH, USA
MYSTERY PARTY IDEAS: For monthes I have been toying with ideas for mystery parties but haven't come up with a complete party plan. I have wanted to write my own murder mystery dinner party like the boxed sets but the job has proved harder than I imagined. I wanted to offer these ideas so maybe it would spark an idea for someone else. These are my ideas mixed with my internet and library research. I should warn mystery parties vary amazingly party to party, and is like no other party theme I've seen.
INVITATION IDEAS: Depending on whether you do a themed mystery (set on a cruise, in a school, on a train, etc.) like the boxed sets, a spy party, a "detective training" party, murder mystery, robbery, Carmen Sandeigo theme, Scooby-Doo, etc. your invites and parties will be different. Not all the invites I list here will work for every type.
#1. Make fake bussiness cards for a private eye firm (kiddonet.com printables work great.)
#2. include fake passport and/or ticket (plane, train, etc.)
#3. cut invitation up into pieces like a puzzle for guest to put together.
#4. Use a manilla folder labeled "Top Secret" and paperclip "case file" inside.
#5. Invite guests to a cruise, banquet, etc where mystery is set.
#6. Ransom note style. Cut out letters from magazines.
#7. Dip in food coloring to give bood soaked look.
#8. Tell guests they are hiers and invite them to a reading of the murdered "will." (much like "The Westing Game.")
#9. Invite guests to a "funeral" of the murdered. Tell them to wear black, prepare ulogies, and bring flowers.
#10. Use a picture of Sherlock Holmes, a magnifying glass, finger or footprints, or question marks to adorn the invite. #11. Write on the plastic/glass of a magnifying glass.
#12. Pertend it's a spy mission, starting out with "Your mission, if you choose to accept it…" Let me also note I am partial to colored envelopes.
FAVORS: It really depends on the age group. You can try: a magnifying glass, gum (gumshoe,) pens and pencils, mini clipboards or pads of paper, disguise kit (stage make-up or fake mustashe or grocho nose and glasses,)chocolate cigars, candy cell phone, fake flowers, dog tags, certificates, the plastic pocket knives that have suckers and magnifying glasses…
ALIASES: If you want to mimic the boxed sets or you just think it would be fun, adding aliases to a mystery party are pretty cool. I made up aliases to look like my guests names by taking a dictionary with first names and famous last names and making the aliases like my guests names. The first names should sound like, rhyme, have the same letters or sounds as the real first names. You ought to start by browsing through the names that start with the same 1 or 2 letters of your guests names. You should just match the last names to the closest last name without it being exactly the same or being something like real name: Rich, Alias: Riches. Try for unusual names instead of sticking to names like Sarah, Ashley, Jane, Jessica, Micheal, David, etc. Make them a little exotic. Here are examples of aliases.
#1. RN: Anne Fox A: Marianne Fowler.
#2. RN: Amy Shackleford A: Effie Shadwell.
#3. RN: Sara Anderson A: Farrah Anderssay.
#4. RN: "Zing" Snowey A: Ingrid Snowden.
#5. RN: Endora Peckington A: Theodora Pecora.
#6. RN: David Lucas A: Arvid Lucretius.
#7. RN: Lisa Smith A: Felice Stevens.
For their characters/aliases, give them jobs, likes and dislikes, age, and how they know the murdered or their connection to the robbed object. Make them all EXTREMELY different. The hardest character to do is Average Joe. You want to make all your aliases very extreme. Cassandra Huntington doesn't have 3 cats, she has 3 dozen and she carries pictures in her wallet of every one! Antonio Moneta isn't only an aspiring poet, he also wrote lymrics for Willie Nelson for a short period of time in 1993! Make them unbeleivably extreme. The stupider, the more fun to play! Sorry I can't really give any help on the real part of the party, the games, the mystery…I'm still working that all out.
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