PLANT CITY – Dodie White says she’s been asked repeatedly over the last few years to help revive an annual mystery dinner theater to benefit Bruton Memorial Library.
She agreed to direct the play this year on one condition: That the event pay special tribute to Dr. Hal Brewer, a beloved family physician whose pet causes included the library.
“That’s what got me motivated. That we honor his memory,” she said.
The last mystery dinner theater sponsored by Friends of Bruton Memorial Library was in 2011. The fundraiser was held for more than a decade and Brewer directed, produced or acted in nearly every production.
“He loved them as much as I did. We directed a lot together,” said White, who also worked with Brewer at Plant City Entertainment community theater.
Tickets for the June 6-7 mystery dinner theater go on sale Thursday at Sunshine State Federal Savings and Loan, 112 E. Baker St.; Regions Bank, 2303 Thonotosassa Road; or Holiday Inn Express, 2102 N. Park Road.
The 15th annual production, “A Dangerous Night on a Desert Isle,” is being presented by Friends of Bruton Memorial Library. The support group pays for children’s summer programs and other extras at the library.
White said the story line isn’t necessarily funny but the cast members will present it in a humorous way.
“I tell the cast to not take it too seriously; just go out and have fun because if they have fun the audience is going to have fun too.”
Brewer, known affectionately as “Dr. Hal,” delivered an estimated 5,000 babies over a nearly four-decade medical career that ended in 1996. He died in November 2012 at age 85 after a bout with cancer.
He was known for his sense of humor, was respected and revered.
“I loved that man so much and despite our age differences he was one of my dearest friends. I miss him so much,” White said.
White said guests will have the chance to win door prizes and solve the mystery. Wine and beer will be available during the evening, she said.
The cast and the roles they play include:
Paul Davis, Captain Kipper; Jon Poppell, Stu Mulligan; Leigh Scott, Pepper Kayne; Rick Lott, Count Croquefort; Edwena Haney, Professor MaryAnne; Rob Evans, Sandy Coolbrick; Mary Heysek, Bitsy Coolbrick; Tom Thoeni, Gunther Benn; Jenny Morgan, Sally Rae; Erica Der, Polly Fein; Charles Harris, Frankie Fein; Mary Mathis, Erika Young; and Kerrie Gafford, Chief Detective.
Sponsorships are available by calling White at (813) 927-0595 or Friends Vice President Gail Lyons at (813) 967-6366.
If You Go
What: Mystery dinner theater to benefit Bruton Memorial Library
When: June 6 and 7; 6 p.m., doors open; 6:30 p.m., dinner served; and 7:30 p.m., play begins.
Where: John R. Trinkle Center, Hillsborough Community College, Plant City campus, 1206 N. Park Road
Tickets: $45 per person, on sale starting Thursday