I cannot describe enough just how wonderful this kit is!I had been wanting to throw a 1920s murder mystery dinner party for a while and, after reading all the testimonials, I purchased the kit, “Murder at the Juice Joint.” It was the best possible decision! I had RSVPs greater than 20 people so I purchased the kit for up to 80 guests. I only gave myself 1.5 months to plan the party, and I wish I had used 3 months instead.
Things I learned after throwing this party:
- Give yourself at least 3 months to plan— I only planned 1.5 months out and it felt very rushed. I was printing and cutting and stuffing envelopes the night before and it was rather stressful getting everything together. Also, the more time you give guests to get a costume, the better.
- Have a separate hostess/ MC—I played as Rosie Marie but also was trying to make the night run smoothly. As a result, I didn’t spend as much time socializing and I forgot a couple of times to say the information my character was assigned. Also, trying to organize the murder scene/ light cutting meant I couldn’t enjoy dinner as my character very well. Additionally, after reading everyone’s bios multiple times to assign the characters, I found it difficult the night of the party to try to act based on only the information Rosie Marie was supposed to know.
- Have a separate photographer— I originally thought our PI Pinkerton could take photos, but that was too much for her to organize the investigation and take pictures. So I started taking them and was further removed from the gameplay. Just have one person responsible for photos.
- Have a separate bartender– We had 2 feature drinks, the Moscow Mule and Southside cocktail, which were a delicious and fun touch! But our Gino Gin was stuck in the kitchen for a large part of the party, and I helped as well, which, once again, removed us from gameplay. If you have feature drinks, which I highly suggest, just have a person assigned solely to that duty.
- DO NOT USE CANDLES IF YOU ARE GOING TO CUT THE LIGHTS— When my roommate and I tested the murder scene the night before, it looked awesome when we flipped the circuit that cuts the power to the whole house. But the day of, we had candles on the table so that when the lights were cut, you could still see and it was a little awkward. People just were watching as the victim kinda stumbled backward and fell over. Not nearly as dramatic as we hoped.
- Party poppers make great gunshot noises— we originally tried to find someone with a cap gun, but opted for these. It was great.
- Potluck— We provided Stouffer’s lasagnas, vegetarian and regular, as a main dish for the party. Those were super easy. We asked everyone else to bring side dishes and desserts as well as the alcohol ingredients for the feature drinks. We were able to throw a great party without breaking the bank.
- Give the murder victim things to do after they are killed–-We didn’t do this and I think the night wasn’t as fun for this guest after. You could give them another side character, or make them a “ghost”. I told a friend not in attendance about the ghost part and they said they would have loved playing the ghost–lipstick messages on the mirror, haunting people in creepy voices… We didn’t give this person a good enough option after and they felt like they just had to sit around and not talk to people.
Night of Mystery’s kit was so awesome that I don’t think I will use any other company.This is also going to be an annual tradition now! People can’t wait for the next party. I cannot recommend this kit enough!
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