Murder at Moon Mansion

According to Executive Director Robyn Settoon, The Mines Theatre was created for the community by the community. So it should come as no surprise that any proceeds from the upcoming interactive production “Murder at Moon Mansion” will go to benefit two local organizations — Colors or a Cause and the Missing Piece.

Murder at Moon Mansion bills itself thusly, “There’s a mystery at Moon Mansion and it’s up to the audience to solve it! Strange occurrences have been reported for years, from ghost sightings to unexplained lights, and now an investigation has been planned to try and solve the murder of Minnie Moon. Provided with clues, it’s up to you to avenge Minnie’s untimely death!”

Flyers for the event feature a September 5, 2017, classified ad from The Moon Daily News that reads:

“The mansion was decorated and festivities were in full swing on the evening of Dec 2,1965, for Minnie Moon’s ‘Sweet 16’ birthday celebration. As the evening progressed, clouds rolled in and the skies darkened, illuminated by streaks of lightning, perhaps a forewarning of the tragedy that was to strike! It is said that on nights like this, doom befell the mansion and its inhabitants.

Many tales have been passed down regarding the strange occurrences that took place at Moon Mansion over the years, and now high above the town, Moon Mansion stands alone, foreboding — a shell of its former self. Abandoned, ravaged by fire and left to slowly descend back into the earth from which it came, the mansion seems to be looking down upon the town.

Hi, My name is Randy Lewis and I’m an Investigative Reporter for The Moon Daily News. Yes, that’s right, the paper started by none other than Fredrick Moon, many moons ago … pardon the pun! I have recently uncovered some information on the strange disappearance of Minnie Moon and have decided to search the mansion to determine what actually happened that fateful night. If you are interested in joining my team, please contact me at 337.215.1602 for more information.”

Settoon said the show is the first she knows of to be staged locally at a theatrical venue. “In this scenario, the investigative teams enter the mansion in groups and will have a set time to go through the rooms searching for clues,” she said. “A week prior to each performance, (6:30 p.m. Saturday October 14 and 28) an investigative kit will be mailed to ticket holders, including a map of Moon Mansion, the Moon family tree, and a little history, to familiarize the investigators in their search for clues.  Murder At Moon Mansion, along with all prior dinner theatre productions for The Mines Theatre, have been written and created by local individuals.”

Because investigating a crime can work up an appetite, immediately following the production will be a catered meal featuring an entrée of beef stroganoff.

Asked about the cast, Settoon told the Southwest Daily News, “The cast is a mystery, but they are all volunteers from the community. There are individuals from Sulphur, Carlyss, Moss Bluff, Westlake, and Lake Charles participating.”

In deciding to donate the proceeds, Settoon said, “The Mines has a history of giving back to the community which we serve. This year, non-profits were presented to the board for consideration, who then met with these groups.”

She said the board was pleased to select Colors For A Cause and The Missing Piece. “Both organizations have been great to work with on this venture,” she said. “Both have individuals from their groups not only working with us, but also acting in the production. These organizations provide needed assistance to our community and are very passionate about the causes they serve.”

Colors For A Cause primarily serves families experiencing childhood cancer and The Missing Piece, work with those who have autism by providing ABA Training.

 “Individual tickets are $30, which includes a catered meal.  There are tables and sponsorship prices available online at theminestheatre.com or by contacting the theatre at 337.215.1602. Information pertaining to the show can be found on The Mines Theatre Facebook page and website.”

The performance will be staged at The Mines Theatre, 121 E. Napoleon St. in Sulphur. Proceeds from the Oct. 14 production go to Colors for a Cause and The Missing Piece will receive the proceeds from the Oct. 28 performance.

Individual tickets are $30, which includes the catered meal. There are tables and sponsorship prices available online at theminestheatre.com or by contacting the theatre at 337.215.1602. Information pertaining to the show can be found on The Mines Theatre Facebook page and website.

The Mines Theatre is a local non-profit 501c3, operated by volunteers. Murder At Moon Mansion is supported by a SWLA Convention & Visitor’s Bureau Tourism Marketing Grant from the Lake Charles/SWLA Convention & Visitors Bureau as administered by the Arts Council of SWLA.