March 1 – 3, 2019
In the 1970s, Mohonk Mountain House was the birthplace of Mystery Weekends. Join us to watch a mystery unfold before your eyes! Performers from Murder Café act out each scene in front of you, and it’s up to you and your team to solve the crime. Highlights also include a dance party and reception, an original puzzle hunt by Greg Pliska, an escape room, and more!
The Art of Murder
It’s the swinging sixties and Simon Templar, a wealthy adventurer and master thief known as The Saint, has been invited to Countess Kristina’s charity ball. She wants Simon to steal her jewels; he wants her to help him bring down the Shadow Commission, a mysterious mob whose members have made their money in dark places. Nothing is what it seems and no one is who he or she appears to be. You’ll join The Countess’s guests at Friday night dance, and an art auction on Saturday. Somewhere in between there will be two murders along with clues and motives that lead to everyone. The suspects are a gang of shadowy entrepreneurs representing oil, real estate, cosmetics, motion pictures, radio, art, fine wine, and gambling.
Please note: This year you can participate on a team, as a couple, or as an individual. If you are on a team you will be eligible to win a prize in the team performance on Sunday, otherwise all other contests (the written solutions to the Mystery, the Greg Pliska puzzle hunt, and the fastest time out of the Escape Room) are open to all guests that are part of the program. Costumes are encouraged as a way to add to the fun, but they are not required. All prizes and winners will be revealed on Sunday. If you wish to eat meals with your Team please sign up in advance.
Availability is limited. For reservations, please call .
MYSTERY WEEKEND CLUES
What to do and how to get around
- Sign-up at the Registration Table on the Ground Floor across from the Central Stairs from 4pm – 5:30pm
- We recommend making dinner reservations prior to 7pm at the Chef’s Action Stations Buffet to make the first event at 8:45pm
- If you don’t make it to the opening event on Friday, do not fret. At the Saturday morning event there will be a printed recap of the show.
- Be on the lookout: you never know when a mysterious stranger may deliver your puzzle hunt packet.
- On Saturday the Mystery will continue to unfold at 10am and 5pm so don’t miss these events!
- Each team can present a creative solution on Sunday morning for a chance to win prizes. They will have five minutes to perform their presentation with teams called at random. Prizes are given in two categories: “most accurate” and “most creative” solutions. Props, costumes, and any other accents should be brought by participants.
- The Mystery play can be solved individually and sheets should be submitted by 10am on Sunday.
- There will also be prizes for the team or person who gets free from the Escape Room with the fastest time. Also, Greg Pliska will award prizes for the winners who solve his original puzzle packet.
- Use your imagination for any other props, costumes or supplies you might need to break the case.
This program is not recommended for children under age 12. Parental guidance is suggested. There is a $30 per person program fee for participation in the Mystery Weekend program.
SCHEDULE OF EVENTS
FRIDAY, MARCH 1
Team Registration in the Lake Lounge
4pm – 5:30pm
Afternoon Tea and Cookies
4pm – 5pm
There’s something suspicious in the air! Register on a team from 4pm to 5:30pm, and begin to plan your strategy to pursue potential suspects.
The Art of Murder: Act 1
Simon Templar, aka ‘The Saint,’ introduces himself and his reason for accepting Countess Kristina’s invitation to her charity ball. As a guest you will mingle with assorted characters, sample brandy from a local vineyard, and dance to cool 60s music. The tunes will be interrupted as the members of the Shadow Commission reveal themselves and their conflicts. Ma Green, a Las Vegas based mob boss, enters and there is much discussion about a secret plan. Everyone seems to be in on it, except Simon. A Mohonk security guard attempts to end the bickering between characters and restore order but things get worse when the evening ends with gunshots and a body.
Party Time! Dance and Reception
9:30pm – 11pm
How is your footwork? Try to maintain that smile even though there is a killer (or killers) on the loose. Let’s hope there are no unsavory gate-crashers who try to turn the tables. Music provided by a DJ from JTD Productions. Cash bar available.
Be Sure to Lock Your Doors
Who knows who might be lurking in the hallway…
SATURDAY, MARCH 2
Escape Room: TBA
9:30am – 6:30pm
The Escape Room is a standalone event that will be held repeatedly throughout the day. The escape room is not part of the rest of our mystery story, but guests must be a part of the Mystery Program to participate. Sign-up is required, please call .
The Art of Murder: Act 2
Countess Kristina and her adversary Winnie Winchell, the wife of noted talk radio host Wynn Winchell, are conducting an art auction. A number of paintings are on display, all created by noted artists. As a guest you are invited to bid on the paintings. The competition is fierce because some of the paintings contain information the Countess’s guests want squashed. Prince Omar must have the original Warfield at any cost, Ma Green declares a painting called ‘The Plan’ is a fake, Fay Fernack, a local vintner, buys a work by Anonymous, and Winnie ends up with a painting that could prove to be lethal. Tempers flare, brandy is swilled, and another body falls.
The Art of Murder: Act 3
Simon Templar attempts to run an investigation into the two murders. He has very little credibility because he’s been asked to steal the Countess’s jewels for the insurance money. One of the guests reveals her secret identity as Phoebe Couzins, a United States Marshall. She proceeds to take over the investigation and before darkness falls several of the other guests reveal their secret identities. Five clues leading to the murders are revealed and each one is connected to one of the Countess’s guests. The suspects include The Saint, who is also assisting Phoebe in her investigation, the Countess, Prince Omar, Fay Fernack, Zigfeld Zagonoff and Wynn Winchell.
Dance if You Dare!
Join your teammates and enjoy Willa and Company as they rock out with blues and soul tunes. Cash bar available.
SUNDAY, MARCH 3
Team Solutions Presented
Illuminate, entertain, and maybe even show up your competition as you and your teammates act out your solution. Be creative, be bold, and be imaginative.
Mystery Solved! Act 4
Phoebe Couzine, the United States Marshall working with The Saint, lays out her case in front of the suspects and the murderer is revealed. After, the winners of all the contests will be revealed and prizes awarded.
Murder Café, our Program Host for the weekend, brings theater directly to you with an extraordinary mix of skill and talent. A professional repertory company since 1998, Murder Café delivers original scripts, period costumes, one-of-a-kind production design, and marketing and publicity skills that ensure each event’s success. Their public shows are scheduled year-round throughout New York’s Hudson Valley, along with fundraising events, company parties, country club dinners, banquets, and casino entertainment.
Composer and musician Greg Pliska has been solving and creating puzzles since he could read. He is a puzzle writer and presenter for public radio’s “Ask Me Another,” and he now creates puzzle hunts for corporate and academic clients. His composing work includes the Broadway play Sylvia and acclaimed productions for New York’s Shakespeare in the Park. His recent work includes orchestrations for the film The Infiltrator, the CBS Evening News theme, and the new IMAX theme. Greg has created an original puzzle treasure hunt for Will Shortz’s Wonderful World of Words at Mohonk Mountain House for the last 12 years and brings a new mystery puzzle to the Mountain House for Mystery Weekend’s 41st anniversary.
JTD Productions is a boutique DJ and events company owned and operated by Dave Leonard. Our DJs love music and want you to have the best party of your life; we know how integral our role is to make that happen. Our style is unobtrusive yet present and we control the flow with the music and not the mic. We honor your unique tastes; we’re hip without being esoteric and accessible without being cheesy.
Availability is limited. For reservations, please call .
When you visit for Mystery Weekend, your overnight package includes:
- Three meals daily featuring fresh, locally sourced cuisine from our farm-to-table partners
- Access to more than 85 miles of the Hudson Valley’s best hiking trails
- Boating, fishing, and swimming on Lake Mohonk
- Daily Guided “House History” Tours of our National Historic Landmark resort
- Guided Nature Hikes with stunning views of the Catskill Mountains
- Yoga, Meditation, and Fitness Classes
- Indoor Heated Pool with underwater music
- Afternoon tea and cookies in our historic Lake Lounge
- Nightly Evening Entertainment
- Special Events and more! See schedule of activities >
A la carte experiences available to overnight guests:
- A full menu of nature-inspired treatments at our award-winning spa
- The Carriage Lounge, featuring a full bar and handcrafted cocktails as well as hyperlocal draft beer and hard cider
- An award-winning wine list in our Main Dining Room