Just in time for Halloween, “Murder at the Gibson Inn: An Oyster City Mystery,” is an original full-length play written and directed by Franklin County's native son Royce Rolstad, III, for the Panhandle Players.

Just in time for Halloween, “Murder at the Gibson Inn: An Oyster City Mystery,” is an original full-length play written and directed by Franklin County's native son Royce Rolstad, III, for the Panhandle Players.

The play will make its world debut at the Chapman Auditorium, Friday and Saturday, Oct. 20 and 21 at 7:30 p.m. ET, and Sunday, Oct. 22 at 3 p.m. ET.

Audiences will be riveted by the murder and mayhem in this fictionalized (but possibly true) depiction of some of the ghosts thought to haunt Apalachicola's historic Gibson Inn. How did they become ghosts? Did they pass peacefully in their sleep, or did a dastardly deed do them in?

The opening scene sets the tone of mystery and intrigue when visitors (Jerry Hurley and Sally Crown) seeking a room at the Gibson ask the desk clerk Miss Cleo (Judy Loftus) if the inn is really haunted. Miss Cleo answers with a sinister look, "Maybe jes, maybe no! Would ju like to find out?" Through the exotic accent of Miss Cleo, the two curious tourists listen wide-eyed as she takes them from present day back to the past, the 1930s.

Slyly, she tells the tale of how a pirate's hidden treasure was the seed for mayhem among townfolk. The possible discovery of a map leading to the treasure's location in the sands of St. George Island drove the dreams and greed that led to murder.

As Miss Cleo's tale unfolds, ghosts, (portrayed by Wes Davis, Megan Shiver, Katie Maxwell, Teresa Ann Martin, Ed Aguiar, Rodney Reeves, Bob Inguagiato, and David Stedman) of some of Apalachicola's a midst a hurricane, to become entangled in the search for riches, and the fateful outcomes that came to pass.

A seasoned actor and director for Panhandle Players, newly-minted playwright Rolstad is excited about the world premier of his play, choosing to direct it himself to fully realize his vision.

“I am thrilled the Panhandle Players chose to open their season with my show,” Rolstad said. “I hope locals and visitors alike will come out and enjoy this tale of murder and greed.”

Rolstad and the cast will be supported by Assistant Director Judith Loftus, and Karen Berkley as stage manager. Mark and Natalie Parsley are designing and constructing the set to resemble the Gibson Inn's lobby in the 1930s.

Tickets are $15 and are available online at panhandleplayers.com or at the door. Box office opens one hour before curtain.

The Chapman Auditorium is located in Apalachicola at the corner of Highway 98 and 14th Street.