Mardi Gras, Masks and Murder cast members - front (l-r) Michele Harbin, Diedra Hall, Mayor Mike Callis; middle (l-r) Jackie Wilber, Megann Thompson, Dr. Nathan Shadowens, Bob Moon; back (l-r) Clark Shifflett, Chad Wilson, Tim Baker, Chuck Lyons.

The Portland Chamber of Commerce presented its annual Murder Mystery and Auction on Sept. 26 at Spring Lake Farm. 

The title of the murder mystery this year was “Mardi Gras, Masks, and Murder.” Rita Taylor was the author of the play. Members of the community were the characters in the presentation. Going along with the Mardi Gras theme, Chuck Lyons organized a Dixie Land Band to add to the excitement. 

Each table of guests analyzed the clues presented during the play to decide who the murderer was and why it happened. This year an assistant to the governor was accidentally killed by the murderer when she was trying to kill the governor.

Best Dressed Attendees Award went to Kat and Anthony Bradshaw. Tim Baker received The Best Actor/Character Award, along with Deidra Hall receiving the Best Dressed Character Award. Jackie Wilber was the murderer. The winning team was Tres Amigos.

Those attending had seven caterers to choose from during the dinner hour. The featured caterers were Brewster’s Bar & Grille, Brickyard Café, Delaney’s Street Eats & Caterers, El Azteca Mexican Restaurant, Southern Occasions Event Center, The Barbecue Pit, and Top of the Ridge Catering.

Chamber President and CEO Sherri Ferguson said, “We are excited that this event seems to grow every year. The multiple caterers make this a taste of Portland that does not disappoint. The talent of the business leaders on stage is something that amazes me every year. Just when I think it can't get any better, it does.” 

The event was sponsored by State Rep. William Lamberth, Spring Lake Farms, Wally Gilliam Realty & Auction, and Dobbs Family Photography. Premier Partners were Old Hickory Credit Union, Shoals Technologies Group, TriStar Portland, The Farmers Bank, Portland Utilities Construction Co., LLC, and Exit Realty Garden Gate Team. Twenty businesses provided center pieces for the auction conducted by Wally Gilliam Realty & Auction.

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