September to bring murder, mayhem to downtown

The Port Orchard Downtown Merchants Association met again Thursday morning to announce the finalization of their nonprofit status and bank account, elect officers and discuss their partnership with the Port Orchard Chamber of Commerce in putting on the first “Who Killed the Captain?” Weekend.

According to the association’s new interim vice president Dennis Lei, the downtown merchants are officially up and running.

The group has formed several committees — including marketing, public relations and events committees — that will keep the nonprofit running smoothly while drawing attention to the new downtown.

Lei said in addition to a new ad campaign tentatively titled “Come See Your New Downtown Port Orchard,” the new events committee will be partnering with the Chamber of Commerce to promote a full weekend of festivities with a pirate theme starting Sept. 16.

According to Mallory Jackson, interim president of the association and one of the organizers of the event, the “Who Killed the Captain?” weekend is brand new and will feature the Port Orchard Pirates in a clue-style murder mystery.

“It’s a combination of weekend mystery event and fundraiser for Chamber of Commerce, the Merchant’s Association and the Port Orchard Pirates,” Jackson said.

Weekend participants will pay a small registration fee and receive a booklet leading them to clues throughout Port Orchard’s downtown shops.

That Sunday, a small presentation will be given to unveil who did kill the Captain. In the meantime, musical acts will perform and t-shirt and souvenirs will be sold to tourists drawn to the event.

Jackson also sits on the chamber’s board of directors and said the chamber’s Great Ball Race fundraiser will become the “Great Cannonball Race,” a permanent part of the murder-mystery event organizers hope to turn into an annual fundraiser with alternating themes.

“We’re hoping that the murder mystery and Great Ball Race will become an annual event with a different theme every year,” Jackson said.

The Downtown Merchant’s Association will meet again on May 18 at 8 a.m. in the upstairs Terrace Room at Myhre’s in downtown Port Orchard.

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