‘Clue’ road rally comes to West Bloomfield

By: Cari DeLamielleure-Scott | West Bloomfield Beacon | Published May 21, 2014

WEST BLOOMFIELD — The game starts like this: A member of the paparazzi was found murdered in a West Bloomfield apartment, and while the police department has narrowed down the possible suspects, it’s up to “investigators” to decipher who has done it, with what and where in a live version of the board game “Clue.”

Partnering with Quizzo Detroit, a pub/bar trivia game provider in St. Clair Shores, the West Bloomfield Parks and Recreation Commission will host West Bloomfield’s first crime-sleuthing game around the township 8-11 p.m. May 30.

“The Case of the Dead Paparazzi” is one of four murder-mystery games that Quizzo Detroit organizes throughout surrounding downtown communities, including Berkley, Plymouth and Birmingham. Because West Bloomfield does not have a downtown area, the game is formatted as a road rally featuring actors, investigations, scavenger hunts and problem solving for people 21 and older.

“This is basically a grown-up game of ‘Clue.’ They’ll be given clues, they’ll have to interview suspects and they’ll have to come out with the answer,” said Ted Davis, Parks and Recreation Commission superintendent. “It’s not going to be Professor Plum in the library with a candlestick, but they’ll have to name … two parts to it.”

Davis put his proverbial magnifying glass to use when he participated in a game in Berkley and, because of the unique concept, decided to bring the game to West Bloomfield.

The Parks and Recreation Commission will sign up 25 cars, with a maximum of four people per car, to travel around the township, retrieving clues to solve the mystery.

“My parents used to do road rallies all the time. No one does it anymore, but every time you do it, you have fun,” Davis said.

In the week prior to the game, “investigators” will be contacted via email with a meeting place, the name of an informant and items necessary to bring, according to Don Klemmer, of Quizzo Detroit. Participants will then travel to local bars, restaurants and maybe even a back alley to find clues. Once “investigators” find their informants, who are actors, the informants will provide the next clue.

“I show up (to West Bloomfield) Tuesday or Wednesday before the event and write out the clues so it feels like it’s happening in your town,” Klemmer said, adding that informants could be newspaper reporters, public officials or even local musicians.

Improvisation actors from Detroit will be dressed down to increase the level of difficulty, and participants will have to look closely to find people like Miss Romain with the butterfly tattoo.

“It’s got a lot of meat, a lot of problem solving,” Klemmer said.

When Quizzo Detroit first launched the murder-mystery series, it was designed to be a race, but with the suggestion of players, the game was “slowed down,” and the team that correctly guesses the answer will win a gift bag filled with gift cards from participating restaurants, Klemmer said. If more than one team has the right answer, a tie-breaking quiz determines the winner.

If the event is successful, Davis said, the Parks and Recreation Commission is considering hosting Quizzo Detroit’s entire murder-mystery series. 

Preregistration is required and costs $100 per car for residents and $110 per car for nonresidents. The Murder Mystery Road Rally will take place 8-11 p.m. May 30. Participants will be contacted the week prior to the game with the meeting place and name of their first informant. For more information or to register, visit www.westbloomfieldparks.org. For more information about Quizzo Detroit’s live version of the board game “Clue,” visit www.quizzodetroit.com.