Mystery dinner theater awaits at historic Springfield house

Friday’s dinner menu includes a side of mystery with one of Springfield’s historic houses as the setting.

The Woman’s Town Club and Springfield Civic Theatre will present “Mayhem at the Masquerade,” an interactive mystery dinner theater event at the historic Buchwalter House, 805 E. High St. Tickets cost $50 and includes dinner, wine and the program; the reservation deadline is Wednesday.

A mock celebration of the ongoing restoration of the house will set the tone for the evening. But with every good mystery, things are not always what they seem with messages from the past channeled by a psychic, missing money and maybe a hidden treasure could be involved.

Don’t expect to just sit back and let the actors solve it. Guests can be a part of the mystery, getting a part of possibly a donor or architect. The two groups have done this in the past and look forward to this chapter.

“You try to set up a situation, get a basic storyline and order of events and then a lot of improv with the actors goes on,” said Suzanne Grote, president of Springfield Civic, who wrote the original scenario with Rita Brooks. “It takes a while to come up with the twists and turns.”

They add fun like naming the psychic Charlotte Tann and the head of an architectural firm Leigh Derr; Grote said to say the names aloud to get the gist. The guests can help solve the mystery or just sit back and enjoy the atmosphere, their choice.

“This is a chance to be a part of the theater. People love this about our productions,” Grote said.

The Buchwalter House will also play a supporting role with the newly renovated upstairs rooms potentially holding some clues to the mystery according to Marilyn Ryan of the Town Club.

Proceeds will go to the Woman’s Town Club, which continues to undergo renovations. There will also be chances to contribute to Springfield Civic.

To reserve tickets, call 937-378-1685 or 937-657-4648 or for more information, go to

If the show is successful, a second show may be added on Sunday, March 5. Check the Facebook page for updates.

Springfield Civic’s final show of the season will be “Southern Hospitality” at the John Legend Theater, April 20-22.


What: “Mayhem at the Masquerade”

Where: Buchwalter House, 805 E. High St., Springfield

When: 6 p.m. Friday, March 3

Admission: $50

More info:

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