East Lynne Theater Company to Host MURDER MYSTERIES and Playwriting Weekends

The award-winning East Lynne Theater Company and The Henry Sawyer Inn's Murder Mystery Weekends and Playwriting-Get-Away return this winter.

There are three opportunities guests can test their sleuthing skills with Murder Mystery Weekends: February 21 and 22; March 7 and 8; and March 21 and 22.

Retired Philadelphia police detective Frank Smith is on hand to provide just enough information to keep the investigation going. Packages include Friday night appetizers at the inn, dinner at one of Cape May's fine restaurants, breakfasts at the inn, and a dessert reception on Saturday evening - all while guests continue to gather clues to solve the crime. Cost is $389 for two people (plus tax) in a deluxe room at The Henry Sawyer Inn; upgrade to a two-room suite for an additional $60. Adding a third or fourth person in a suite costs $105 plus tax for each additional person.

Reservations are made through The Henry Sawyer Inn by phone, 609-884-5667, or online at henrysawyerinn@verizon.net. Accommodations are also available at Twin Gables, located across the street from The Henry Sawyer Inn. Phone 609-884?7332 or online at twgables@verizon.net.

The Playwriting Get-Away is on February 28 March 1. Using exercises to trigger the imagination, participants are encouraged to create "ten-minute plays" during three workshop sessions, culminating in these works being read aloud by ELTC company members. ELTC's Artistic Director Gayle Stahlhuth, who has taught theater and playwriting in a variety of settings throughout the country, is heading up the workshop. Organizations that have commissioned her plays include the Smithsonian Institution, Theatreworks USA, and the Illinois Humanities Council. Where her plays have been produced include Manhattan Theatre Club and Surflight Theater, and her dramaturgical skills have been sought by independent producers as well as nonprofit companies like Circle Rep.

Not only are the rooms at The Henry Sawyer Inn conducive to the quiet needed for writing, but the parlor and dining room are available for individual use, as well as for the locations for the workshops. Cost is $399 for two people and $299 for one (plus tax), which includes accommodations, breakfast, afternoon tea and treats for two nights, and the workshop fee. For those not needing accommodations, the fee is $150.

Reservations are made through The Henry Sawyer Inn. For further details, contact East Lynne Theater Company at 609-884-5898; e-mail eastlynneco@aol.com or go online to eastlynnetheater.org.

Not only does ELTC have a production season in Cape May from June through mid-December, but the company is actually involved year-round with workshops and touring productions. ELTC's artists teach two-days a week for Wildwood's after-school program, and will once more be working with West Cape May Elementary School students, guiding them in a production of "The Reluctant Dragon" that will be performed on March 12 for the community. ELTC has several productions on the road, and its "Holmes and Carter Mysteries" returns on March 14 and 15 to Cape May. Since James Rana's juggling class was so popular last year, ELTC has procured him for another class on Tuesday, March 18 from 7:00-8:30 thanks to funding from New Jersey Theatre Alliance's "Stages Festival."

Contact ELTC for information about any of the above events as well as the 2014 season, season tickets, group sales, educational outreach, and touring productions.

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