David Eyring, Delanie Blomquist and Bill DeBrason with a "victim" at a Whodunnit for Hire murder mystery.
David Eyring, Delanie Blomquist and Bill DeBrason with a "victim" at a Whodunnit for Hire murder mystery. (Courtesy photo)

If you’re looking for something different to do with family or friends and if you like sharing a good meal out — and especially if you’re a hard core mystery fan — here’s a fun one for you.

Whodunnit for Hire and the Best Western Westminster have teamed up with the Carroll County Arts Council for a Murder Mystery Fundraising Dinner. Join them for murder, mystery and mayhem on Friday, Sept. 14, and again on Friday, Oct. 12, from 7 to 9 each evening. A portion of ticket sales will benefit the Arts Council.


Wendy Olenik of Sykesville is the owner of Whodunnit for Hire. She said the theme is the 1950s and she hopes to see audience members in poodle skirts and ponytails, jeans and white tees.

“This event is not like going to see a play where the audience is watching a performance of actors,” she said. “Coming to this event will put you in the middle of an experience set in 1958. I am asking folks to come dressed in 1950s attire and walk back into time with me. Once the event gets underway, I will give each guest a notebook and ask them to search for clues, interrogate suspects and help me solve whodunnit. They can invite suspects to sit with them at their table. If you are familiar with the board game CLUE, it is like playing a live version of that game. And, believe it or not, a few guests will actually be suspects accused of the crime — that is, if they volunteer. I don’t force anyone to engage if they’d rather not.”

Olenik said the play takes place in a malt shop where guests have gathered to choose an Elvis impersonator for an upcoming fundraising event.

“When one of the contestants falls to the floor and dies — oh my! — everyone present will be asked to help solve whodunnit,” she said. “The mystery is a comedy and will at no time have guests frightened or confused. The emphasis is on the zany characters and the motives.”

The cost of $75 per person includes a deluxe three-course dinner with three entree options — Classy Chassis Chicken/Big Daddy Beef or Fat City Fish — plus a non-alcoholic beverage, free parking, taxes and gratuity, downloadable photos and a donation to the Arts Council. A gluten-free oven-roasted sirloin is also available.

Coffee, tea, decaf and iced tea are included with the meal. Classic 1950s drink options will also be available for purchase, including a White Russian, a Pink Squirrel, the Tom Collins and Cosmopolitans.

“I am so excited about the 1950s-themed meal being provided and the cocktails offered at the cash bar,” Olenik said.

Check-in is from 6 to 6:15 p.m. for this 6 to 9 p.m. event. Tickets are only available until midnight of the previous Sunday and will not be sold at the door. Guests must be 21 years old or older.

Attendees may also participate in an additional 50/50 raffle, with proceeds going to the Arts Council.

“I like to say this is so much fun, you might die laughing,” Olenik said. “If you are looking for a unique and fun night out, this is it. Grab some friends and see if you are up to the challenge. But watch out. You might be accused of the crime.”

Learn more online and purchase tickets at CCACTickets.eventbrite.com or email questions to Olenik at murdermysterycompany@gmail.com.


A Cornhole Tournament hosted by the Roaring Run Lions Club will be held Saturday, Sept. 21 at their community park at 3233 Old Westminster Pike in Finksburg.

“This is our fourth annual cornhole held at our park,” said Roaring Run Lions Club president Tim Ganske. “It’s a good relaxed time of fellowship with a little spirit of competition!”

The tournament starts at 9 a.m. and the cost is a $40 entry fee for a team of two people. Ganske said the tournament usually ends around noon.


“We have fresh-made breakfast sandwiches and drinks for sale in our concession stand,” he said. “We have a raffle and a high point competition, where you pay a fee and get eight bags to toss at the target. The highest score wins half the income from that game. There is a special prize for the highest-placing Lions Club teams, too. Prizes include gift cards and donated prizes.”

Registration ends on Sept. 21, so hurry to sign up. Interested players can call Ganske at 410-848-2371 or email him at mrtimg@msn.com to sign up.

“Cornhole is an easy game that all ages can enjoy,” Ganske said. “Last year we had our youngest contestant being 12 and the oldest almost 80.”

Roast Beef Dinner

Patapsco United Methodist Church will hold a Roast Beef Dinner inside the church hall on Saturday, Sept. 14, beginning at 11:30 a.m.

Look for a family-style roast beef dinner served and prepared by Patapsco United Methodist Women. The meal includes roast beef, gravy, mashed potatoes, Harvard beets, green beans, coleslaw, drinks and dessert. Carryout dinners and homemade soups will be available for purchase as well.

The cost is $12 per person, or $6.50 for children ages 6 to 12 years old. Children age 5 and younger are free. Carryout meals cost $13 each.

The Church Hall of Patapsco United Methodist Church is located at 2821 Patapsco Road in Finksburg.

For more information call the church at 410-857-9210.

Writers’ Open House

An Open House on Saturday, Sept 14, from 1 to 3 p.m. at the Finksburg branch library will give area residents a chance to meet an array of county writers and discuss writing and reading.

The event is sponsored by the Carroll County Chapter of Maryland Writers’ Association and the County Critique Group. Visitors can learn more about how to write with area resources. Free refreshments will be available, too.

Used books will be for sale — including those about writing and those by the local authors at special prices. Money raised from the Used Book Sale will help fund special chapter projects.

Lois Szymanski covers Finksburg, Gamber, Pleasant Valley, Reese, Sandymount, Silver Run, Smallwood, Union Mills and Westminster. Reach her at 443-293-7811 or LoisSzymanski@hotmail.com .