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Murder to go, Inc.

Murder to go, Inc.

The airport, however, is in the midst of a nasty custody dispute, that, if not dimming hopes for a brighter future, should at least earn it a guest spot on television's "Divorce Court." When Thomas Barnes won a bitter race for mayor of Gary last year, he appointed an entirely new airport board. The old board, though, chosen by the ousted 20-year veteran Mayor Richard Hatcher, refused to step down. The Hatcher board voted to change the name of Gary Regional to the Hatcher Gary Regional Airport. In November, the Barnes board voted to change the airport's name back.

Meanwhile, opponents of airport expansion are taking advantage of the boards' conflict. A citizens' group called Residents United to Regain Agricultural Land formed to fight the destruction of prim farm land and the threat to native birds and wild flowers that would result from construction of a new bistate airport to the south of Gary. Neighborhood groups are protesting expansion of Gary Regional because they say it would increase noise pollution and decrease property values. The Izaak Walton League has joined the action, and even the FAA is questioning whether a third major airport so close to Chicago would hopelessly crowd existing air space and make current approach patterns unusable.

A blood-spattered brochure imprinted with the words, "We simply die to come to your party," is bound to get your attention.

That's the marketing slogan of Fort Wayne-based Murder to go, Inc. Since 1987, the murder-mystery theatrical troupe has been offering business gatherings, trade shows and private parties in northeast Indiana an alternative to accordian players and stand-up comics. Soon, this unique entertainment service will be available to audiences statewide.

Murder to go is the brainchild of its president, Mark D. Dollins, who got the inspiration for this unique audience-participation party service when he was a player in a Fort Wayne community theater production of the Agatha Christie classic, "The Mousetrap." Performers in a Murder to go production mingle with the crowd, dropping real and misleading clues, then move into a half-hour-long scripted show in which a murder is committed. Party guests participate in the action by helping to identify the killer.

By day, Dollins is a staff editor at Indiana Michigan Power in Fort Wayne. By night, he is one of a cast of six characters in the entertainment ensemble. But Murder to go is more than an artistic outlet for Dollins, his wife and their friends.

Murder to go is now expanding into the Indianapolis and South Bend entertainment markets. Dollins is working with theatrical booking agencies in these cities to recruit performers. Murder to go will provide training and consultant services and will critique and fine-tune all productions before they are premiered. Murder to go will do a follow-up client survey also, to assure the productions have met company standards.

Murder to go scripts are written so that they may be adapted to any entertainment situation, be it aboard a tour bus, at a backyard barbecue or in an art museum, "anywhere at anytime," says Dollins. The cost of booking the traveling murder-mystery show varies from $200 to $300, says Dollins, depending upon the prevailing scale in the different markets.
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Copyright 1989 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Title Annotation:murder mystery theatrical troupe
Publication:Indiana Business Magazine
Article Type:company profile
Date:Jan 1, 1989
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